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4.4 
36c 

r. 7 ,v 

69718 



GENEALOGY COLLECTION 



ALLEN COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY 



3 1833 01100 3701 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 
in 2013 



http://archive.org/details/collectionss7v5mass 



COLLECTIONS 



MASSACHUSETTS HISTORICAL SOCIETY. 



Committee of Publication. 

CHARLES C. SMITH. 
WINSLOW WARREN. 
CHARLES K. BOLTON. 



COLLECTIONS 



OF THE 



MASSACHUSETTS HISTORICAL SOCIETY. 



SEVENTH SERIES.— VOL. V. 



Publish at tije Charge of tije ^ppleton JFutfl. 




BOSTON: 
PUBLISHED BY THE SOCIETY. 



MDCCCCV. 



5Entijersttg ipress: 
John Wilson and Son, Cambridge. 



CONTENTS. 

11G3718 



PAGE 

Officers of the Society elected April 13, 1905 ... vii 

Resident Members viii 

Honorary and Corresponding Members x 

Members Deceased , . xii 

Preface . . . . xiii 

The Heath Papers 1 

Index 409 



OFFICERS 



OF THE 



MASSACHUSETTS HISTORICAL SOCIETY, 

Elected April 13, 1905. 



^resibeni. 
CHARLES FRANCIS ADAMS, LL.D Lincoln. 

SAMUEL A. GREEN, LL.D Boston. 

JAMES F. RHODES, LL.D. Boston. 

^rcorbhtg J^emiarg. 
EDWARD J. YOUNG, D.D Waltham. 

Corresponding JSecretarg. 
HENRY W. HAYNES, A.M Boston. 

treasurer. 
CHARLES C. SMITH, A.M Boston. 

librarian. 
SAMUEL A. GREEN, LL.D Boston. 

Cabmef-JlcepEr. 
GRENVILLE H. NORCROSS, LL.B Boston. 

Utembers at |Targe of % Council. 

JAMES F. HUNNEWELL, A.M Boston. 

JAMES De NORMANDIE, D.D Roxbury. 

THOMAS W. HIGGINSON, LL.D Cambridge. 

ALBERT B. HART, LL.D Cambridge. 

THOMAS L. LIVERMORE, A.M Jamaica Plain. 

A dditional Member of the Council. 
ROGER B. MERRIMAN, Ph.D Cambridge. 



[rii] 



RESIDENT MEMBERS, 

AT THE DATE OF THE PRINTING OF THIS BOOK, IK THE ORDER OF 
THEIR ELECTION. 



1860. 
Hon. Samuel Abbott Green, LL.D. 
Charles Eliot Norton, D.C.L. 

1861. 
Rev. Edward Everett Hale, D.D. 

1865. 
Josiah Phillips Quincy, A.M. 

1866. 
Henry Gardner Denny, A.M. 

1867. 
Charles Card Smith, A.M. 

1871. 
Abner Cheney Goodell, A.M. 
Edward Doubleday Harris, Esq. 

1873. 
Winslow Warren, LL.B. 
Charles William Eliot, LL.D. 

1875. 
diaries Francis Adams, LL.D. 
William Phineas Upham, A.B. 

1876. 

Hon. William Everett, LL.D. 
Hon. Henry Cabot Lodge, LL.D. 

1877. 
John Torrey Morse, Jr., A.B. 

1878. 
Gamaliel Bradford, A.B. 
Rev. Edward James Young, D.D. 
[viii] 



1879. 
Henry Williamson Haynes, A.M. 

1880. 
Thomas Wentworth Higginson, LL.D. 

1881. 
Rev. Henry Fitch Jenks, A.M. 
Rev. Edmund Farwell Slafter, D.D. 
Hon. Stephen Salisbury, A.M. 
Rev. Alexander McKenzie, D.D. 

1882. 
Arthur Lord, A.B. 
Frederick Ward Putnam, A.M. 
James McKellar Bugbee, Esq. 

1884. 
Hon. John Elliot Sanford, LL.D. 
Edward Channing, Ph.D. 

1886. 
William Watson Goodwin, D.C.L. 
Rev. Alexander Viets Griswold 
Allen, D.D. 

1887. 
Solomon Lincoln, A.M. 
Edwin Pliny Seaver, A.M. 

1889. 
Albert Bushnell Hart, LL.D. 
Thornton Kirkland Lothrop, LL.B. 

1890. 
Henry Fitz-Gilbert Waters, A.M. 
Abbott Lawrence Lowell, LL.B. 

1891. 
Hon. Oliver Wendell Holmes, LL.D. 
Henry Pickering Walcott, M.D. 



RESIDENT MEMBERS. 



IX 



1892. 
George Spring Merriam, A.M. 

1893. 
Hon. Charles Russell Codman, LL.B. 
Barrett Wendell, A.B. 
James Ford Rhodes, LL.D. • 

1894. 
Hon. Edward Francis Johnson, LL.B. 
Rt. Rev. William Lawrence, D.D. 
William Roscoe Thayer, A.M. 

1895. 
Rev. Morton Dexter, A.M. 
Hon. Thomas Jefferson Coolidge, 

LL.D. 
Hon. William Wallace Crapo, LL.D. 

1896. 

Hon. Francis Cabot Lowell, A.B. 
Granville Stanley Hall, LL.D. 
Alexander Agassiz, LL.D. 
Hon. James Madison Barker, LL.D. 
Col. Theodore Ayrault Dodge. 

1897. 

Thomas Corwin Mendenhall, LL.D. 
Rev. Leverett Wilson Spring, D.D. 
Col. William Roscoe Livermore. 
Hon. Richard Olney, LL.D. 
Lucien Carr, A.M. 

1898. 

Rev. George Angier Gordon, D.D. 
John Chipman Gray, LL.D. 
Rev. James De Normandie, D.D. 
Andrew McFarland Davis, A.M. 



Archibald Cary Coolidge, Ph.D. 
John Noble, LL.D. 
Charles Pickering Bowditch, A.M. 
Rev. Edward Henry Hall, D.D. 



1900. 

James Frothingham Ilunnewell, 

A.M. 
Hon. Daniel Henry Chamberlain, 

LL.D. 
Melville Madison Bjgelow, LL.D. 

1901. 
Thomas Leonard Livermore, A.M. 
Nathaniel Paine, A.M. 
Charles Gross, Ph.D. 
John Osborne Sumner, A.B. 
Arthur Theodore Lyman, A.M. 
Samuel Lothrop Thorndike, A.M. 

1902. 
Edward Henry Strobel, A.B. 
Henry Lee Higginson, LL.D. 
Brooks Adams, A.B. 
Grenville Howland Norcross, LL.B. 
Edward Hooker Gilbert, A.B. 
John Carver Palfrey, A.M. 

1903. 
Franklin Benjamin Sanborn, A.B. 
Charles Knowles Bolton, A.B. 
Samuel Savage Shaw, LL.B. 
Ephraim Emerton, Ph.D. 
Waldo Lincoln, A.B. 
Frederic Jesup Stimson, LL.B. 
Edward Stanwood, Litt.D. 
Moorfield Storey, A.M. 

1904. 
Thomas Minns, Esq. 
Roger Bigelow Merriman, Ph.D. 
Charles Henry Dalton, Esq. 
Charles Homer Haskins, Ph.D. 

1905. 
Hon. John Davis Long, LL.D. 
Don Gleason Hill, A.M. 
Theodore Clarke Smith, Ph.D. 
Henry Greenleaf Pearson, A.B. 
Bliss Perry, L.H.D. 



HONORARY MEMBERS. 



1871. 
David Masson, LL.D. 

1887. 
Hon. Carl Schurz, LL.D. 

1896. 
Rt. Hon. James Bryce, D.C.L. 

1899. 
Rt. Hon. Sir George Otto Trevelyan, 
Bart., D.C.L. 



1901. 
Pasquale Villari. 

1902. 
Henry Charles Lea, LL.D. 

1904. 
Adolf Harnack. 
Rt. Hon. John Morley, LL.D. 
Goldwin Smith, D.C.L. 



1905. 



Ernest Lavisse. 



CORRESPONDING MEMBERS. 



1875. 

Hon. John Bigelow, LL.D. 
Hubert Howe Bancroft, A.M. 

1877. 
Gustave Vapereau. 

1878. 

John Austin Stevens, A.B. 
Joseph Florimond Loubat, LL.D. 
Charles Henry Hart, LL.B. 

1879. 

Franklin Bowditch Dexter, Litt.D. 

John Marshall Brown, A.M. 

Hon. Andrew Dickson White, LL.D. 

M 



1880. 

Sir James McPherson Le Moine. 
Henry Adams, LL.D. 

1881. 
Rev. Henry Martyn Baird, D.D. 

1883. 
Rev. Charles Richmond Weld, LL.D. 

1886. 

Hon. William Ashmead Courtenay, 
LL.D. 

1887. 

John Andrew Doyle, M.A. 



CORRESPONDING MEMBERS. 



XI 



1891. 
Alexander Brown, D.C.L. 

1894. 
Capt. Alfred Thayer Mahan, D.C.L. 

• 1896. 

Hon. James Burrill Angell, LL.D. 
William Babcock Weeden, A.M. 
Richard Garnett, LL.D. 

1897. 

Rev. George Park Fisher, D.D. 

Woodrow Wilson, LL.D. 

Hon. Joseph Hodges Choate, D.C.L. 

1898. 

Frederic William Maitland, LL.D. 
John Franklin Jameson, LL.D. 

1899. 
Rev. William Cunningham, LL.D. 

1900. 
Hon. Simeon Eben Baldwin, LL.D. 
John Bassett Moore, LL.D. 
Hon. John Hay, LL.D. 



1901. 
Daniel Coit Gilman, LL.D. 
Frederic Harrison, M.A. 
Frederic Bancroft, LL.D. 
Charles Harding Firth, LL.D. 
William James Ashley, M.A. 

1902'. 
Edward Gaylord Bourne, Ph.D. 
John Bach McMaster, Litt.D. 
Albert Venn Dicey, LL.D. 
Reuben Gold Thwaites, LL.D. 
John Christopher Schwab, Ph.D. 
Worthington Chauncey Ford, Esq. 

1903. 
Rev. Arthur Blake Ellis, LL.B. 
Auguste Moireau. 
Hon. Horace Davis, LL.D. 

1904. 
Sidney Lee, Litt.D. 
Frederick Jackson Turner, Ph.D. 
Sir Spencer Walpole, K.C.B. 

1905. 
William Archibald Dunning, Ph.D. 
James Schouler, LL.D. 
George Parker Winship, A.M. 
Gabriel Hanotaux. 



MEMBERS DECEASED. 



Members who have died, or of whose death information has been received, since the last 

volume of Collections was issued, October 20, 1904, arranged in the 

order of their election, and with date of death. 

Resident. 

Robert Charles Winthrop, Jr., A. M June 5, 1905. 

Rev. Samuel Edward Herrick, D.l) Dec. 4, 1904. 

Hon. John Summerfield Bray ton, LL.D Oct. 30, 1904. 

[The Resident Membership of Rev. Arthur Latham Perry, LL.D., was terminated by- 
resignation Dec. 8, 1904, and tliat of James Schouler, LL.D., was terminated Dec. 27, 1904, 
by his removal from Massachusetts.] 

Corresponding. 
Abbe Henry Raymond Casgrain, Litt. D Feb. 11, 1904. 



[xii] 



PREFACE. 



r I ^HIS volume comprises a selection from the Heath 
■*• Papers beginning with January, 1780, and coming 
down to the close of General Heath's active military life 
in the summer of 1783. At this point the volume would 
naturally have ended ; but it has been thought desirable 
to add four other letters written at a much later period, 
both for their own interest and for the light which they 
throw on the character of the writers. In the Appendix 
will be found extracts from General Heath's Orderly 
Book, giving the history of the Court-Martial for the 
trial of General McDougall, with the finding of the Court 
and Washington's action in consequence of it. 

In spite of the enormous mass of papers preserved by 
General Heath it is certain that many documents, some 
of them of considerable importance, had disappeared 
before the collection came into the possession of Mr. 
Lawrence, as stated in the preface to the second part of 
the Heath Papers. A striking illustration of this occurs 
in connection with the controversy, in 1778, between 
General Heath and General Phillips of the Convention 
troops. In General Heath's Memoirs and in our previous 
volume are numerous letters bearing on the subject, and 
it was supposed by the Committee that in one or the other 
place would be found everything of interest or impor- 

[ xiii ] 



XIV PREFACE. 

tance relating to it; but in the " Report on American 
Manuscripts in the Royal Institution of Great Britain/' 
issued in London at about the same time as our volume, 
are a number of letters printed or calendared from copies 
sent over to England, of which neither originals nor 
copies now exist in the Heath Papers. They contain no 
new facts, but they should not be overlooked in any 
thorough study of the episode of the Convention troops 1 
and it is not easy to see how they could have been lost, 
except through carelessness after the death of General 
Heath. 

It ought to be repeated that, with only a few excep- 
tions, General Heath's own letters are printed from his 
rough draughts evidently written in great haste, and that 
he ought not to be held responsible for all their obvious 
errors in spelling. Many of these errors were probably 
corrected in the fair copy. 

For the Committee, 

CHARLES C. SMITH. 
Boston, June 15, 1905. 



THE HEATH PAPERS. 

Pakt III. 



THE HEATH PAPERS. 



REPRESENTATION FROM THE OFFICERS AT WEST POINT.* 

Sir, — Your being personally present in this sever sea- 
son which we know stroimgly impresses your mind with 
a scene of their suffering circumstances, therefor having 
no doupt of your humanity to relieve them, and justis to 
hear their complaints when founded on justis and reason, 
gives us, the commanding officers of the regiments in 
the 3 rd and 4 th brigades, to lay the complaints of the 
soldiers to the officers of the scantity of their present 
alowance of their provision under the heavey fatigue this 
garrison is now subject to, which is more sever than at 
any other time, in hailing provisions, forage and material 
for the barracks over and above the supply of wood for 
the garrison and ourselves ; and the beef being thin and 
not any vegetables at this season to be procured as in 
time pass. Therfor request your Honor would hear our 
desires to have their alowance of provision increased to a 
sufficiancey for their present subsistence and support, and 
also take of any bad impressions that may hinder our 

* This representation is without date, but it was no doubt written in the early part of 
January, and was enclosed in General Paterson's letter of Jan. 8, 1780. — Eds. 



4 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

further reinlisting, and will greatly encourage to persever 
in the public service. 

We are with esteem, dear Sir, y r very humble servants. 

Mich l Jackson, Col 8 Massach ts Beg*. 

Gam l Bradford, Col°. 

Thomas Marshall, Col . 

Seth Drew, Cap* Comd. 

Benj a Warren, Cap* Comm dt . 

Moses Knap, Maf. 

J. Wesson, Colo. 

Brig dr Gen 1 Patterson. 



JOHN PATERSON* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, Jan* 8 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I take the liberty to inclose a rep- 
resentation by the field officers of this division to me 
this morning ; am sensible you will do everything in 
your power to relieve them. Their distress is really very 
great. A number are frozen lying in the field and getting 
their wood. If this severe season continues I am afraid 
we shall perish. It will be impossible to finish our bar- 
racks unless it moderates; neither masons or carpenters 
can do any business. I have this day ordered one hun- 
dred and fifty to break a path to Gen 1 Glover's brigade, 
and another to mark a road on the ice to New Windsor, 
where w r e have nine hundred bushells of pease for this 
post which must be transported by hand. 

I am, with great respect, your most ob*, humble 

servant. 

Jn° Paters on. 

Hon ble Maj r Gen 1 Heath. 

Indorsed : From Gen 1 Paterson, enclosing a representation from the com- 
manding- officers at West Point of scantyness of allowance, Jan>' 8 th , 1780. 

* For notice of General Paterson, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 330 n. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM SIIEPAItD. 



WILLIAM SHEPARD* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Dear General, — I received your favours yesterday 
by the express of the 4 th and 5 th ; shall strictly observe 
the contents as far as lies in my power. Your observa- 
tions on the account of the enemy's being supplied with 
cattel and provitions from the Tories and Cow Boys is 
strictly true, and I am very sure their has been a consid- 
erable of a trade carried on between the inhabitants and 
others with the enemy at New York for months past. 
Sir, you may be assurd I shall do all in my power to 
comply with your orders and instructions whilst I am 
honord with this command. Sir, I have been much em- 
barrast since I have been at this post on the account of the 
severity of the season and the unaccountabel depth of 
snow and the roads being intirely blocked up, and not 
any provitions at the post when I arriv d , nor within near 
twenty miles, except two days meat. I imediately sent 
to Horseneck to procure meat and rum. M r Ray, the 
officer I sent, after five days unaccountable fatigue, arriv d 
with fourteen head of cattle, but could not procure any 
rum or flower, unless he went to Danbury, and it being 
impossible to get to Danbury with a horse, and much 
more so with a carrage, I have given the matter up at 
present. Their has not an officer or soldier had anything 
to drink this seven days except could water and cold 
weather. 

As the cattle did not arive so soon as I expected from 
Horseneck I sent Cap* Hunt with fifty men to Bedford 
to procure provitions and to impress teames to bring it 
on. He procurd tw T o days pork, about eight hundred 

* Col., afterward Gen., William Shepard was born Dec. 1, 1737, and died at Westfield, 
Mass., Nov. 11, 1817. After a service of six years in the French war, he entered the 
American army on the breaking out of the war with the mother country, and served with 
distinction to its close. He also took an active part in the suppression of Shays's rebellion ; 
and from 1797 to 1803 was a member of Congress. See Drake's Dictionary of American 
Biography, p. 821. —Eds. 



G THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

weight of flower, and two good teams, and set out and 
came one mile, but found the snow so unaccountably 
drifted that he was oblidged to turn his teams back, and 
the men took part of the pork on their backs, and brought 
it to camp. The flower still remains their, which I am 
now sending a detachment to bring it on, after the troops 
which are now ready to march towards the White Plains. 
The detachment are now two days destitute of flower. I 
am informd that their is a considerable quantity of grain 
below the Plains and at the Purchase, which I shall 
indeavour to collect. In case I fail of this intention the 
troops must live on meat alone or starve. 

In case the detachment was supplid with racketts I 
should be nun concernd but what I could supply them 
with provitions without much difficulty, but the snow is 
so unaccountably drifted that we cannot have any assist- 
ance by teams or horses. In case we brake paths or 
shovel through the drifts, it will not be one hour before 
they are filld up again. The inhabitants bring all their 
grain to the mills on their back, and hall their wood 
on hand sleds. 

I have sent two parties down to the Plains, one of 
which has returnd. The officer informs me that the 
snow is near as deep their as hear, and quite as much 
drifted. Theirs near one third part of the detachment have 
either frose their feet or ears or fingers. The party that 
was sent down to supply the places of the deserters 
almost every man got froast bitten before they arrivd 
hear. 

I am, dear General, with great esteem, 

Your devot d hum le serv*. 

W M Shepard. 

North Castle, Jan^ 9 th , 1780. 
To General Heath. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO WILLIAM SHEPARD. 

Head Quarters, Robinson's House; Jan r y 10 th , -780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of yesterday is just handed to 
me. I am sorry that you have had so many embarrass- 
ments to encounter during your command. The snow 
has been uncommonly deep, and every part of the army 
have experienced the severity of the season. The roads 
here as well as with you are almost impassible. 

Enclosed is a letter pointing out in some measure how 
you are to obtain provisions when it can be transported, 
and Major Campbell has orders to furnish teams when 
called upon ; but the time of your being relieved is so 
nigh that you will be scarcly able to put it in execution. 
You will, however, communicate it to the officer who 
relieves you. I wish the weather had been favorable, 
as I am confident you would have taken some usefull 
steps below. As it is, you can only make your men com- 
fortable, and protect the country. 

If ever you should have occasion to impress teams, let 
it be done by the nearest justice. An act of the State 
empowers and directs them on an application to do it, 
and they chearfully do their duty. Let the purchasing 
commissary engage the wheat if any is obtained from the 
inhabitants, and do not suffer any provisions to be taken 
by compulsion. I pity the unfortunate men who have 
been frost-bitten. I am exercising my every endeavor 
to make the troops in every respect as comfortable as is 
in my power. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Col Sheppard. 



THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Robinson's House, Jau r y 10 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — The last evening the north redoubt 
was discovered to be on fire at the southwest corner on 
the out side, about two feet below the top of the parapet 
and within the face or outside timbers. The fire ap- 
peared to be makeing its way towards the magazine, 
which is in that end of the bomb proof and where at 
that time were ten bbls. of powder, which at first much 
alarmed the garrison, but the powder and about 100 
bbls. of provisions were immediately and safely removed. 
As soon as I received information of the fire I sent to 
West Point (being the nearest post from which assistance 
could be afforded) and desired Gen 1 Patterson instantly 
to send over 100 men with axes, shovels, & c . This w T as 
done with great expedition and the fire after some time 
happily extinguished without any great damage to the 
works, altho appearances for some time were very serious. 
How the fire began in that place, and whether by acci- 
dent or design, is yet a mistery. I shall order the most 
critical enquiry into the matter. The two redoubts are 
garrisoned by Cap 1 " Walker's company of artillery and 
a Serjeant's guard of infantry in each. Cap 1 Walker 
appears to be a most judicious, active, and vigilant 
officer. 

I have this day surveyed the damage and find that 
it will be very easily repaired, having been principally 
occasioned by starting a few timbers at the corner to 
come at the fire, which will be placed down again. 

Since it is my duty to make this report, I take the 
liberty to make another which I did not intend to 
trouble your Excellency with (at least not untill I re- 
ported the conclusion of the whole) viz*, that on the 
morning of the first of January, sixty odd soldiers of 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 9 

the garrison of West Point, who had entertained a most 
absurd and groundless opinion that their time of service 
expired the first instant, altho engaged for three years 
and enlisted at differant periods since January, 1777, 
slung their packs and went on with arms and accoutre- 
ments compleat. As soon as it was known Cap 1 Bailey, 
with one hundred men, was ordered to pursue and bring 
them back dead or alive ; they proceeded up the west 
side of the river, not being able to pass at West Point 
either in boats or on the ice. Not knowing, as they had 
so much the start of Cap* Bailey, but they might reach 
Fishkill before him and pass there, I sent off an express 
to the commanding officer of the reg* at that place, to 
be in readiness to stop them. Fortunately Cap* Bailey 
overtook them at New Windsor and without any opposi- 
tion escorted them safely back to West Point on Monday 
the 3 rd instant, where a number of the principals are 
closely confined, and the rest set at liberty. A court 
martial is now siting for the tryal of them, and proba- 
bly some will meet the punishment they deserve. It 
appears to have been a plan for those belonging to the 
Massachusetts brigades to have rendezvousd at Fishkill, 
and from thence proceed to Danbury, and after being 
joynd by those of Gen 1 Poor's brigade of like sentiments 
to march home. The early measures taken disconcerted 
their plan; several Serjeants went off w T ith and led the 
men. A serjeant in Col Bigelow's reg fc who had ex- 
pressed his sentiments a day or two before rather too 
freely was confined, tryed, and sentenced to receive one 
hundred lashes and be reduced to the ranks. This was 
executed at the head of the brigade at roll call the 
evening of the 31 st ult°, and I believe with good effect, 
for not a single man went off from the quarters of the bri- 
gade, altho' near sixty belonging to Gen 1 Glover's brigade 
went off from the lines where they had not heard what 
had taken place in the brigade. Parties were imme- 



10 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

diately sent after these, but whether they are overtaken 
or were stoped by Gen 1 Poor or the light horse is not yet 
known. Should they escape our parties, as soon as I am 
ascertained of it, shall write the General Assembly, re- 
questing that they may be immediately apprehended, 
and sent back in the most exemplary manner. We are 
now perfectly quiet and not a lisp is heard of going home 
before terms of service are fully expired. I am sorry 
that the contents of this letter are such as tend to give 
your Excellency pain ; they have given me much, but 
I would have born it alone, did I not think it my duty 
to report them. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Highlands, Jan r y 18 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — The enclos'd I detained a day or 
two since out of a number of letters, submitted to me 
for inspection, intended for New York by a flag. The 
letter is undoubtedly from M r Bostwick, the commissary 
of forage at Fish-kill, and its contents on the face of the 
letter inocent, but on the other side seems to be a 
mistery which I cannot develop. I think the writing on 
the other side was wrote by the same hand with a better 
pen, which seems to be pretty apparant in the word 
Bostwick in particular, but it may have been wrote by 
another. The two leaves of the letter were remarkably 
close pressed together, and had the appearance of having 
been in a press and my opening of the leaves was the 
mearest accident. I have shewn it only to the gentlemen 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 151, 152. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 11 

of my own family and to Col Hay in confidence. It 
indeed looks very suspicions, and may contain intelli- 
gence, ruff tallow may be designed for troops at one 
post and hide those at another, the quarters the strength 
of a brigade, & c , or it may be an acco* of beef already 
supply 'd, & c . I am at loss what steps to take ; my first 
intention was to have communicated the matter to Gov- 
ernor Clinton, on further consideration I have thought it 
duty to lay it before your Excellency, and take your 
advice and direction. 

There is a M r David Bush at Horseneck, a gentleman 
of family and fortune but a reputed Tory, but I cannot 
tell whether he be the person alluded to or not. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv* 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency G. W. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 20 th , 1780. 

Sir, — I was some time since honored with your favors 
of the 30 th Dec r , 1 st and 7 th instant, which I have not had 
an oppertunity before to acknowledge. Please, Sir, to ac- 
cept my thanks for your particular attention, not only to 
the public good, but releif of my family in granting a 
permit for the transportation of a few barrels of flour 
out of this State. The snow is uncommonly deep and 
weather severe. Horses and travellers have pass d King's 
Ferry on the ice for some days past. 

A detachment of the main army nnder the command 
of Major-General Lord Stirling made a descent on Staten 
Island the last Saturday night. The enemy immediately 
retired to their works. Our troops were on the island 

* For a notice of Governor Clinton, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. 157 n. — Ed3. 



12 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

when I last heard from that quarter, but whether they 
have taken possession of the works or left the island is 
not yet known here. It is said the situation of the har- 
bour of New York is at present such as to put it out of 
the power of the enemy to succor their troops on Staten 
Island. I have lately had several deserters from the 
enemy. They all agree that the army and inhabitants 
at New York are in great distress for want of fuel, are 
cuting up the wharves, &c. They are also exceedingly 
anxious for the arrival of a fleet of victuallers which has 
been for some time expected, and without which they are 
apprehensive of being short of provisions. The officers 
on our lines inform me that there are large quantities of 
grain and stocks of cattle in the possession of the inhabi- 
tants of the lower parts of West Chester county, and a 
constant trade and intercourse kept up with the enemy. 
This in the last instance is confirmed by all the deserters. 
I have enjoyned the greatest vigilance on the officers, if 
possible to prevent this trade. Your Excellency is the 
judge whether it be expedient to bring off any part of 
the grain or cattle below the lines. Policy at this time 
dictates that we accelerate the wants and distresses of the 
enemy as much as possible, but in instances where the 
persons or property of the subjects of the State are in- 
volved I shall be wholly dictated by your Excellency, 
and I am assured that no measures that can conduce to 
the public good will be either unthought of or untryed. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

vV. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Clinton. 

P. S. Col Sheppard, who has been on the lines during 
the late severe weather, and this moment returnd, in- 
forms me that he was obliged while on command to take 
from Phillips's lower mills a quantity of flour and meal as 
specified on the enclosed mem . Col Sheppard gave 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 13 

positive orders that no grain belonging to the inhabitants 
should be touched, and if any such was taken away it 
was through mistake. Col Sheppard was under the 
necessity before he came away to desire a Lieu* Vanvoost 
and M r Boris who live below Yonkers, to assess the grain 
and forage below the lines agreable to the law of this State. 
In this way some relief has and will be obtaind for the 
troops on the lines. As I have never seen the act, I wish 
if your Excellency does not approve of thepersons above 
mentiond assessing the grain and forage that others in 
that quarter may be appointed. Col Sheppard further 
informs me that it is reported that M r Phillips's miller is 
employed to purchase up grain, &c, which he is un- 
doubtedly daily doing. ™- -pr 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Highlands, Jan r y 21 st , 1780. 

Dear General, — The bearer, Lieut. Williams of the 
first Massachusetts regiment, waits on your Excellency 
to receive and forward to this place such monies as you 
may think proper to deliver him for the purpose of paying 
the continental bounty to the re-inlisted soldiers agre- 
able to your Excellency's letter of the 31 st ulto. 

Two deserters belonging to the 3 rd battalion of British 
artillery came here the day before yesterday ; one of 
them left the city the 15 th inst., and the other left Fort 
Washington the same day. They both relate the des- 
tressed state of the troops and inhabitants for the want 
of fuel, and that they are cuting up the wharves, that 
they are very anxious for the arrival of a fleet of victual- 
lers, which have been for some time expected ; and 
without their arrival the garrison will be short of pro- 
visions. The one from Fort Washington corrects the 
intelligence brought out by the Hessian deserters respect- 



14 THE HEATH PAPEES. [1780. 

ing the grenadiers and light infantry which I mentioned 
in a former letter. The 1 st and 2 nd regiments of guards 
with their own grenadiers and light infantry (instead of 
the corps of grenadiers and light infantry) are at Fort 
Washington, with 2 reg ts of Germans and part of Col° 
Wurmb's y augers. 

For the recovery of my health, much impaired by my 
late indisposition, and which is not yet eradicated, and 
on account of my domestick affairs, I wish for a short 
leave of absence to visit my family during the winter if 
possible. If a relaxation from business and change of 
air should not have the happy effect which I hope for and 
expect, I may be reduced to the disagreable necessity of 
asking leave to retire from the service. If your Excellency 
should be pleased to grant this indulgence, I wish to have 
it the beginning of the month of Feb ry , and hope by that 
time Major General Howe will be at liberty to return to 
this place. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 

P. S. Major Bauman is importuning leave to try some 
experiments in gunnery, which he saies will be of public 
utility, and that he has heretofore proposed them to your 
Excellency. I request to be informed whether your 
Excellency thinks it proper to have the experiments 
made, and at this time which the Major represents as 
peculiarly advantageous on account of the river being 
frozen. 

I am just informed that Major Allen of Col Putnam's 
reg*, who some time since went home on furlough, was 
lately killed by an accidental shot at North Hampton, on 
a party of pleasure hunting deer. 

W. H. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 15 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 25 th , 1780. 

Sir, — It is with reluctance that I interrupt your Ex- 
cellency in those important deliberations in which you 
are engaged, but at a time when the very continuance of 
the army at these important posts becomes a question, 
I know you will excuse me. 

The situation of this army at this instant is truly 
alarming, and without speedy releif most serious and 
disagreable consequences may be expected. The garri- 
son of West Point have during the winter been at a 
scanty allowance of bread, and often without any at all ; 
this has been the case for these four or five days past. 
The garrison have been and still are obliged to be on 
almost constant fatigue, draging materials for their bar- 
racks and all their fuel on hand sledges more than a 
mile. Some of the troops are yet in tents and during 
the winter hitherto have been obliged to encounter 
hunger and cold, performing by hand that business which 
ought to be done by teams. This they have endured and 
performed with a patience scarcly to be conceived. But 
your Excellency well knows the disposition of soldiers, as 
well as of mankind in general, and that altho means may 
be devised or exercised to keep them patient or quiet for 
a time, yet a crisis may come if a remedy to their real 
wants is not afforded ; and in such cases it is impossible 
to exercise those coersive measures proper on other occa- 
sions. We have been long flattering the troops that 
releif would soon come, and during the winter the ration 
of flour has been reduced to 3 / 4 lb p r day. With every exer- 
tion in my power, and the removal of part of the wheat 
from those mills that had not a supply of water to some 
which had, a scanty daily supply has not been obtained, 
altho the transportation with sleighs has of late been 



16 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

very advantageous ; and if such straits and difficulties 
subsist now, what is to be expect should a thaw of the 
snow suddenly take place which will render the roads 
impassible for some days at least ? Insted of raising 
magazines at this post to enable the garrison to sustain 
a seige, which is indispensibly necessary, we can scarcly 
obtain our daily bread. 

I am informed by the D. Q. M. G. that forage cannot be 
procured for the teams absolutely necessary to be em- 
ployed for the transportation of provisions, & c ; whether 
this proceeds from a real scarcity of forage or some other 
cause I do not pretend to say. Such, however, is our 
situation, should the troops be reduced to such necessi- 
ties as to disperse them the most important posts in the 
United States, and the only barrier for the security of 
this State, will be left open to the enemy. Unless the 
troops are cantoned among the inhabitants nearest the 
posts, or parties under the command of officers sent out 
to take provisions with some shew of regularity, to pre- 
vent the soldiers (driven by the necessitys of hunger 
which are irresistible) takeing where ever they can find 
it to sustain life, — all these in every view are to me dis- 
agreable in the extreme ; my mind recoils at them even 
in idea, but what else without reieif can be expected ? 

After having made this representation to which duty 
constrains me, and it is not exagerated, I entreat of your 
Excellency, and of the Hon ble the Legislature, imme- 
diate reieif if it be in your power ; and without which 
(from some quarter) I cannot be answerable for conse- 
quences that may happen. Whether there is a real 
scarcity, or whether the inhabitants have it in their power 
to spare and yet withhold, or whether there be want of 
exertion in the purchasers, or some other impediment, is 
not within my knowledge. Some enquiry seems abso- 
lutely necessary. The gentlemen who compose the Hon. 
the Legislature, as they are from every part of the State. 



1780.] WILLIAM. IIEATII. 17 

are the roost competent judges and under their inspection 
the Hon ble the Congress have been pleased to place it. 

My principal hope and dependence under these embar- 
rassments rests on the confidence I have in the humanity 
and patriotism of your Excellency and the Hon ble the 
Legislature, which on every occasion have been most 
conspicuous. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath, Major Gen 1 . 

His Excellency Governor Clinton. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Highlands, Jan 1 * 26 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — From the unwearied measures that 
I have been pursuing ever since your Excellency's de- 
parture from West Point, and a removal of part of the 
wheat from those mills which had not water to such as 
have, I was in hopes that we should not again experience 
the want of bread, but I am disapointed. Insted of 
raising those magazines at these posts enjoyned in your 
Excellency's instructions, we cannot obtain a daily supply 
of bread. The troops now are, and for several days have 
been without bread. They bear this hardship, as they 
have done often before, with a patience scarcly to be con- 
ceived. But a crisis may come, and it may not [be] 
far distant, when it will be impossible to exercise those 
coersive measures which on other occasions are proper 
and necessary. I have this day represented our alarming 
situation to his Excellency Governor Clinton and the 
Legislature of the State, and without reserve acquainted 
them what may be the consequences if supplies cannot 
be obtained, viz*; either the troops must disperse and 
leave these important posts defenceless, be quartered on 



18 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

the inhabitants nearest the posts, or parties under the 
command of officers, in order to preserve some show of 
regularity, be sent out to take provisions to prevent the 
soldiers, driven by the necessities of hunger (which are 
irresistible) taking wherever they can find it to sustain 
life. What relief this will produce I cannot tell. I am 
fully assured of every assistance and exertion in the 
power of his Excellency the Governor, and nothing in 
my power shall be wanting ; but unless supplies can be 
obtained I cannot be answerable for the consequences. I 
suspect the root of the evil is in the depreciation of the 
currency, or rather the inability of the purchasing com- 
missaries to discharge the debts long since contracted by 
them, and the people withhold supplies until the old 
debts are paid. Certain it is, a great uneasiness prevails 
on account of the debts lon£ since contracted not being 
discharged, and the purchasing, agents are so embarrassed 
that their credit is exhausted. If the state of the maga- 
zines with the main army is such as to admit of any 
relief of flour I would most earnestly request it. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



UDNY HAY TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fish Kill, 26 th Jan., 1780. 

Dear General, — From every circumstance I am more 
and more alarmd about the situation of the army. Major 
Hale goes off early to-morrow morning with despatches 
from me to General Greene; I have wrote fully on the 
different subjects of the department, given my opinion 
freely with respect to the consequences that must arise 
from our total want of money, and our inability thereby 



1780.] UDNY HAY. 19 

to perform the contracts we have entered into with the 
farmers ; amongst other matters I have freely confessed 
my own incapacity and want of talents sufficient to 
remedy the misfortunes that at present impend over us, 
and beg'd leave to resign by the first of March or by 
an earlier period if found convenient. This does not 
arise from any disgust, either at men or measures, though 
I am convinced part of the latter ought to be rectify'd, 
but from a real diffidence of my own abilities. My 
successor may rely on every aid I can possibly give 
him. 

Permitt me to give my opinion that the only method 
that possibly can be taken to gett the inhabitants suffi- 
ciently roused, and made sensible of the imminent clanger 
that threatens them from the army's disbanding for want 
of flour, will be by ordering a brigade to be quarterd 
amongst them. I wish this could be possibly done with 
propriety in the interiour part of this country. You 
may rely on it, Sir, that without an uncommon inter- 
position of Providence there will be at least one month 
this spring that two horses will not be able to bring one 
barrell of flour forty miles with sufficient forage to carry 
them backwards and forwards on the road. Under these 
circumstances, and without money to pay those who 
would at such a time turn out, give me leave to ask how 
this army w r ill be supplyd, unless their magazines are in 
some measure full before that time arrives ? 

I am, with much respect, dear General, 

Your most obed. se r . 

Udny Hay. 

Gen 1 Heath. 

Please send your dispatches, if you have any, to Major 
Campbell's by 8 in the morning at furthest. 



20 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN PATERSON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan^ 27 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — The repeated instances of fire of late is 
matter of serious consideration, and great care and pains 
must be taken to investigate if possible the real cause of 
it ; if by accident we must increase precaution, if by 
design, the perpretators are probably in the bowels of 
the garrison, and uncommon vigilance becomes neces- 
sary ; the guards should be increased, and patroles very 
frequent. It is surprising to me that the fire the last 
night was not discovered by the sentinels, two or three 
of whom were planted very near the place ; these I trust 
you have had properly secured for examination. 

We must guard against every the least relaxation in 
duty ; if it appears in any instances to be stealing upon 
us, it must be immediately eradicated. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv fc . 

Gen' Patterson. ^y JJeATH 



JOHN PATERSON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, Jan* 27 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have this moment received your 
favour of equal date. I can with truth assure you that 
nothing has or shall be wanting in me to guard against 
accidents of every kind, more particularly fire, as that is 
attended with the most dangerous consequences in this 
garrison. 

A court of inquiery is now sitting to investigate the 
unhappy catrastophe which happened last evening. The 
centinals who were placed near the barrack when it took 
fire were immediately confined in order for tryal ; others 
were placed in their stead, and a number of additional 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 21 

ones planted on the ramparts and other places the most 
convenient to observe and give information of any 
attempts which might be made against the works. 
The guards are increased, and patroles ordered. 
I am, with the greatest esteem, dear General, 

Your hb 1 ser*. 

John Pateeson. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO UDNY HAY. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan^ 27 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 26 tk was handed to me 
the last evening. I have written to Head Quarters by 
Major Hale. Altho the embarrassments on this depart- 
ment are many and great, I am sorry that you even 
admit an idea of quiting the service ; we must persevere 
and surmount all difficulties. I hope the steps we have 
taken will produce some releif. When you call here I 
will shew you my letters to the Governor and Legis- 
lature, & c 9 to whom I have written most explicitly. 

A fire broke out the last night between eleven and 
twelve o'clock at West Point, in the building occupied 
by the quarter master of the garrison and Col Marshall 
It began in the inside (but how is yet unknown) and had 
got to such a heigth before it burst out that the whole 
was instantly in flames. Many effects both public and 
private are burnt; several persons but narrowly escaped 
with their lives. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Col* Hay. 



22 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Highlands, Jan r y 27 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — The last night between eleven and 
twelve o'clock, a fire broke out at West Point in the 
building occupied by Col Marshall and M r Whiting, the 
D. Q. M. of the garrison. The fire began in the inside, 
and as is supposed in the wooden mantle peice of the 
chimney, had got to such a head that the first discovery 
was the whole bursting out in flames. Several persons 
who were asleep in the house had scarcly time to save 
themselves by escapeing in their shirts. The public, as 
well as individuals, have suffered considerable loss. The 
former in a number of tents, the q. master's books and 
papers, and indeed the whole of the stores of that depart- 
ment deposited in that place, return of which as soon as 
can be ascertained will be transmitted to the Q. M. G-. 
Col Marshall has lost part of his baggage, M r Whiting 
a considerable part of his, Cap fc Sewall, the muster master, 
and M r Francis their baggage, commissions, swords, and 
all their cloths except what they had on. Those gentle- 
men are in great distress, and I apprehend they intend 
to address your Excellency for releif. It was with ex- 
treme difficulty that the adjacent building was saved, 
that side of which next the fire is scorched to a coal. 
Had this building taken fire the magazine would have 
been in great danger, if not lost, as the garrison would 
have quitted the fort from apprehensions of instant de- 
struction. I submit to your Excellency whether it is 
not surprising that the important works of Fort Clinton 
and Fort Putnam are both destitute of proper magazines 
for the ammunition when so great a quantity is deposited 
in them. The powder in the former is lodged in one of 
the bomb proofs ; this bomb prooff on the out side, next 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 154, 155. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 23 

the aera of the fort, is faced with fascines, and the 
wooden building above mentioned within a small dis- 
tance of it. Should this take fire when the wind is fresh 
at north or northwest, it would be almost a miricle if the 
magazine escaped. This building I have determined to 
have removed immediately, and afterwards I think the 
powder will not be so secured in the bomb proofs as I 
could wish. 

Your Excellency will find enclosed a petition of Lieut. 
Peabody of the 7 th Massachusetts reg fc for leave to resign 
his commission and the certificates required by your 
Excellency's order. 

A Cap t Flowers and Lieu 1 Snow, sent on command to 
Springfield the last fall to receive and forward on the 
levies, are applying for the reimbursement of their ex- 
pences while on that command ; they inform me that the 
other officers who were sent on that command have had 
their accounts settled by orders from your Excellency. 
As I do not know what allowance has been made to 
others I request direction with respect to these. 

Col Mead at Horseneck has written me that the 
enemy chagrin'd at his late enterprise at Morrissania are 
meditateing one on him ; he wishes as a support to have 
a detachment of continental troops stationed near the 
Purchase, which will form a chain with our lines, but as 
the North River is now frozen down to New York, and 
troops may more expeditiously pass up on the ice then 
by the roads, I have cautioned the troops on the lines to 
keep a sharp look out on that side for the security of the 
post at King's Ferry ; and our present numbers and cir- 
cumstances will not admit of a further detachment. I 
do not know what instructions or orders your Excellency 
may have given to General Poor at Danbury, but if you 
should think proper to order a detachment of about one 
hundred men from that brigade, to take post near the 
Purchase it would compleat our chain from the North 



24 TIIE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

River to the Sound, and I think not only circumscribe 
the enemy to narrow limits, but effectually break up that 
infamous practise of trade and traffick with them, which 
has in a most disgracefull manner for a long time been 
prevailing. Provisions or goods are almost daily taken 
going in to or coming out from the enemy. 

Having had the pleasure this day to hear by some 
officers from the main army that a good supply of flour, 
& c , is on hand and that the ration is increased to one lb. 
pr. day, besides an allowance of Indian meal, and the 
troops here being yet kept to the reduced ration, and 
often not able to obtain even that, I again request some 
relief if it can be granted. If there were any magazines 
within our reach I would not request this. But evry 
one of them in this quarter were exhausted before the 
army went to winter quarters, and since that time the 
season has been such as to prevent the mills grinding 
a sufficiency to releive even our daily wants. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



UDNY HAY TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fish Kill, 28 th Jan., 1780. 

Dear General, — An uncommon run of business yester- 
day and to-day has prevented my answering your sundry 
favours, which I now sitt down to do, and for trans- 
mitting of which I have taken the liberty of detaining 
your express. 

The prisoner was sent to Poughkeepsee with a carefull 
hand who had the charge of him and a letter I sent ad- 
dressed to Doctor Tappen, the Governor's brother in law, 
and one of the Commissioners of Conspiracy. 



1780.] UDNY HAY. 25 

I have sent to enquire about the vegetables you men- 
tion; proper steps shall be taken for bringing them down 
as soon as I can learn the quantity and the places where 
they are. 

Major Weeks has gone off this day to the Legislature 
and carrys your letter to his Excellency, to whom I have 
taken the liberty of writing likewise. The Major will 
use his influence with the members he is best acquainted 
with, and will in person give a true description of our 
situation to the whole. I still think our surest remedy 
would be in sending a brigade up to the new Partners 
and its vicinity, the propriety of this scheme, however, 
I am not a full judge of; I mention it on the principle 
of its being better to risque a little than lose the whole. 

Your letters- to the purchasing commissaries with two 
others I added to them were sent on by different ex- 
presses. I have likewise sent a q r master up to the new 
Partners, with strong letters of recommendation to the 
Justices, and general instruction to gett down the flour 
and wheat as soon as possible, I hope he will be of some 
service. 

Some of the millers have refused to lett the wheat go 
out of their mills ; they pretend no other reason than 
that they have a right to the profit of grinding from the 
wheat having been once deposited there. I have given 
positive orders to take it by force, and if opposed to ac- 
quaint me by express. This may be, and indeed I believe 
is, contrary to the law of the land, but I am clear is justi- 
fiable by the more binding law T s of reason and necessity. 
I can scarce think any man will have the effrontery to 
sue me. 

I had a return made me of 1,400 bushells of wheat and 
20 barrells of flour about thirty miles from this, which 
was sent for, but it unluckily turned out only 424 bushells 
of wheat and 14 barrells of flour. I shall send to the 
commissary from whom I had the return to know from 



26 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

whence the deficiency arises. Unless you have already, 
it is necessary for me to request that you will order a 
court of inquiry to sit and inquire by what means 
the q r master's store at West Point gott fire, and as 
nearly as possible determine the quantity of shoes lost 
thereby. 

I am much oblidged to you, Sir, by your wish that 
I may not think of quitting the department ; the counte- 
nance I have ever mett with from my superiours attach 
me both to them and the service by the strongest ties, 
added to which the nature of the office suits my turn of 
temper, no present nor view of future embarrassments 
w T ould therefore ever make me think of quitting while 
I found a possibility of my services being of the least 
benefit ; but Congress has so often expressed their diffi- 
dence of the officers of the department in general, and 
has not only from a want of cash, but by sundry re- 
solves, so cramp'd us in the execution of our duty that 
I find it become by far too burthensome for me. For 
example permitt rne to give you an extract of one I 
rec d yesterday. 

" That all express riders in the pay of the United 
States be discharged, and that no established express 
riders be in future maintaind at the public expence." 
It becomes my duty to ask you whether I shall comply 
with this resolve, and yett I am ashamed to do it, as it 
would appear like an insult on your understanding to 
suppose a possibility of complying therewith, unless the 
resolve ad mitts of an interpretation which no person 
I have yett showed it to has putt thereon. 

I shall do myself the honour of waiting on you to- 
morrow if I possibly can, and am with the greatest 
respect, dear General, 

Your most obed* ser\ 

Udny Hay. 

General Heath. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 27 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Highlands, Feb'y 2' ld , 1780. 

Dear General, - — I have been honored with yours of 
the 27 th ul fc0 , to which I shall pay clue attention. M r 
Kead, the D y Paymaster, has at length arrived. 

I thank your Excellency for leave of relaxation from 
business for the recovery of my health. The many per- 
plexing matters with which I have been surrounded, 
occasioned by the distressing wants of the troops, have 
been much against me under the impaired state of my 
health, and altho a regard to my health and to my being 
of any future service to the public or my family strongly 
decide in favor of a relaxation from business, yet under 
the present situation of the army I reluct exceedingly 
at the thought of leaving it, which will be with much 
regret. 

I have been unremiting in my endeavours to obtain 
a supply of provisions for the troops here ; my prospects 
have been at times various. M r Fitch by his last letter, 
of the 25 th ulto., observes, — "I think it is possible that 
the troops will not be out of bread again soon," but ex- 
presses apprehensions that our magazines will not be 
properly replenished. This is my principal concern. 
The enclosed coppy of a letter from M r Colt is also expres- 
sive of it, yet I am certain the provisions of the country 
are not exhausted ; our want springs from another cause. 
His Excellency the Governor and the Legislature of this 
State have the situation of the army under consideration. 
I hope we shall feel the salutary effects of it. 

I am unhappy in being under the necessity of acquaint- 
ing your Excellency that the bomb proof in the north 
redoubt was discovered to be on fire the last ni^ht 
between ten and eleven o'clock. Every assistance was 
immediately afforded, but the fire being at the top of 



28 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

the bomb proof in the joints between the timbers, where 
it pursues the caulking, (on which I apprehend it at first 
kindled by a spark from the pipe of the stove) cannot be 
come at, and the earth of which there is a large body on 
the top of the bomb proof, and frozen as hard as earth 
can be, will prevent for some time the top being un- 
covered. The troops work with great alacrity, and every 
method is taken to deaden the fire ; the most efficacious 
we find to be the barrel of a musket with the britch pin 
taken out, with a spunge on the end of the ramrod. 
With this water is forced into the seams and joynts which 
cannot otherwise be come at. This is a striking proof 
with how much ease the fire might be extinguished if we 
had a water engine, the leather hose of which might be 
directed to any part of the work on fire. Is it not indis- 
pensibly necessary that one or more should be kept at 
West Point ? I have been up to the redoubt twice to-day ; 
have returned since dark. The troops work with unre- 
mitting assiduty, have opend a part of the top of the 
bomb proof. L* Col Vose with a strong detachment will 
work all night, unless the fire is extinguished sooner. 

3 rd . The fire was happily extinguished this morning 
about two o'clock; no lives were lost, but several men 
hurt. The damage done is the throwing off the earth 
and takeing up the top timbers of the north end of the 
east side of the bomb proof. The under side of the 
timbers are considerably burnt; the bunks and lineing 
of the bomb proof were taken out. The bomb proof 
at the west end is not injured, nor are the sides or 
end of the other part or any of the posts. These re- 
peated fires may seem extraordinary ; they are so, but 
I assure your Excellency that no endeavours in the 
principal officer have been wanting to guard against 
them. I take the liberty to enclose coppy of an order 
I issued the 10 th of Jan ry , as I have done many others 
since that time on the same subject. Indeed, the situa- 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATn. 20 

tion and construction of our wooden buildings and re- 
doubts are such that it is a wonder fires have not been 
more frequent. The barracks were built in winter and 
in a hurry. The chimneys have wooden mantle" peices, 
and the chimnies badly built, and those places wherein 
stoves are fixed soon become as dry as tinder. In this 
cold and blowing season, a spark catching against a build- 
ing or work, or blown into a crevice, is almost certain to 
be fanned to a flame. Lt. Col Brooks has just informed 
me that the garrison in hard blowing weather are almost 
afraid to close their eyes least fire should break out. 

Enclosed is the report of the court of enquiry ap- 
pointed to investigate the cause of the fire breaking out 
at West Point on the night of [blank]. I have de- 
sired General Patterson to appoint another court of 
enquiry, to ascertain what articles of public property 
were lost in the late fire. And enclosed is also a letter 
handed to me yesterday by a M r William Spencer of 
Fort Pitt, West Augusta, who was a sarjeant in Col° 
Wood's reg* and wounded in the assault on Stoney Point, 
by the enclosed is since promoted to an ensigncy. M r 
Spencer is yet in the hospital at Fishkill ; probably 
your Excellency has some knowledge of the matter. I 
never saw him before, but he appears deserving, tells 
me he has nither friends, cloths, or money. The officers 
of the Virginia Line being gone, he is now dress'd in his 
serg* coat which is much worn. If any relief can be 
afforded him, either of money or cloths, I will gladly 
acquaint him with it. 

This evening I have been honored with a letter from 
Governor Clinton, and take the liberty to enclose coppy 
of. a paragraph. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



30 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Highlands, Feb r y 10 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — In the following I shall give your 
Excellency a state of facts relative to the late capture of 
Lieut. Col Thompson and part of his detachment on the 
lines of this post on the 3 rd instant. 

Lt. Col Thompson was at that time at Younge's near 
the White Plains. His detachment consisted of five com- 
panies, Cap 1 Watson of the 3 rd reg 1 with his company was 
at Younges's house w r ith the Lieut. Col . Cap* Roberts 
of the 15 th reg 1 and Cap 1 Stoddard of the 1 st reg 1 were on 
his right, their greatest distance about two miles; on his 
left were Cap 1 Lieu 1 Farley of the 9 th reg 1 and Cap* 
Cooper of the 14 th reg 1 , their extreme distance rather 
greater than the companies on the right. Pickets were 
advanced from each. On the morning of the 3 rd inst., 
about 9 o'clock, the Lt. Colonel was informed that a body 
of the enemy's horse were advancing, and at that time 
about 2h miles distant; apprehending the enemy to be 
horse only he determin'd to remain where he was, and 
sent to the several companies to joyn him. Soon after 
this the enemy attacked his picket, a serj fc and 8 men, 
who fired on the horse which checked them, on which the 
picket 'attempted to joyn the body, but were overtaken 
by the horse, one or two of them wounded and the whole 
taken prisoners. Not long after the enemy's horse ap- 
peared in sight of the house. The Lt. Col had been 
joyned by Cap fc Roberts's company, w T ho formed on his 
right; the enemy's horse halted at a distance, and dis- 
charged their rifles. Soon after the infantry appeared, 
advancing to the front and right flank of our troops, 
who were now joyned by Cap 1 Lt. Farley's company on 
the left, Cap 1 Stoddard and Cap 1 Cooper coming up, 
one on the right, the other on the left. Our troops pre- 



1780.] WILLIAM nEATH. 31 

served their order, and did not fire untill some time after 
the enemy began, when they received orders and fired. 
The enemy immediately scattered, availing themselves 
of trees and of the ground, of which it must be acknowl- 
edged they very judiciously took the advantage, spring- 
ing from one tree and place to another and constantly 
gaining ground. Their fire being directed both against 
the front and flank of our troops, and a number being 
killed and wounded, they broke, some retreating up the 
road, others into the house, from the doors and windows 
of which they fired on the enemy. At this time Cap* 
Stoddard and Cap* Cooper came up. The former gave 
the enemy two or three fires, but the distance being 
great probably did little or no execution.. The horse at 
this instant were very active and overtook several of our 
men who were makeing their escape. It is said our 
troops discovered great bravery and fought well for 
about fifteen minutes, when the 1/ Col° was compelled 
to surrender. We had 14 men killed on the spot, in- 
cluding Cap fc Roberts, and 17 wounded, three of which 
are since dead. Lt. Col Thompson of Marshall's, Cap 1 
Watson of Greaton's, Cap fc Lieut. Farley of Wesson's, 
Lt. Burley of Tupper's, Lt. Maynard of Greaton's, Ensign 
Fowler of Nixon's and Ensign Bradley of Sheppard's, 
with 90 non-commissioned officers and soldiers, were 
taken prisoners, nine of whom who were wounded were 
left by the enemy at a house some miles down the road. 
The enemy sit fire to M r Young's house, and soon retired, 
leaving two dead, and carrying off their wounded, among 
whom was a cap* of grenadiers, wounded in the hip, and 
a lieut. of the infantry in the thigh. Our troops imme- 
diately after went on to the ground and buried the dead, 
& c . The enemy's force is said to have consisted of about 
60 Jager horse and 40 of refugees, and between 4 and 
500 infantry, detachments from different corps, includ- 
ing a part or the whole of the grenadiers and light 



32 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

infantry companies of the guards. Col Emmerick was out 
as a vollunteer on foot with his rifle and was very active. 
Colonel Norton of the guards commanded the whole, and 
Colonel Delancy was with the refugee horse. 

11 th . By two deserters who left Fort Washington a few 
days since I am informed that the enemy had at that 
place about 150 sleighs when they came away; the 
sleighs were employed in hauling wood. I am just now 
informed by L fc Col Badlam, who is on the advanced 
post, that a body of three hundred of the enemy's horse 
(probably part of these militia) and the 7 th British reg fc 
came the last Monday from Long Island to West Chester 
on the ice, where they now are. Whether their takeing 
post at West Chester is with offensive or defensive views, 
is uncertain ; probably both. I have written Brigadier 
General Poor to hold his brigade in the most perfect 
readiness for action, have patroles on the ice of Hudson's 
River against Peekskill, and from the guard at Swimons, 
down towards Fort Montgomery. Every precaution is 
in exercise, and I trust the enemy will be disapointed 
should they attempt to surprise us. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JEREMIAH POWELL.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Fefry 12 th , 1780. 
Sir, — I am fully sensible that the Hon ble the Council 
may justly have expected to have heard from me much 
oftener than they have done during the winter, but the 
absence of a great number of officers of all ranks, the 
particular wants and necessities of the troops, occa- 

* For a notice of Jeremiah Powell, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. 126 re. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 33 

sioned by the uncommon severity of the season, have 
taken up almost every moment of my time day and 
night, and will I am confident make a sufficient appology 
for any omission in our correspondence. 

The troops have been at a very scanty allowance of 
bread during the winter, and often times for many days 
without any at all. This has been principally occasioned 
by the uncommon dry fall and winter which has stopped 
a great part of the mills. Fortunately for the troops I 
have been able to obtain a large quantity of peas, which 
have been a great releif to them ; but notwithstanding all 
their tryals and sufferings they exhibit a patience, 
health, good temper and spirit not to be parralleled. 
Every attention is undoubtedly due to them ; many of 
them are yet suffering for the want of clothing, and I am 
sorry to be under the necessity of observing that their 
wants and necessities are considerably encreased and are 
continued by the want of a sub or State clothier. If 
there be one, in justice to the suffering troops, I must in- 
treat that he may be enjoyned to be constantly with or 
near the army. 

An action happened on the 3 rd instant on the lines of 
this post between the advance corps under the command 
of L* Col Thompson of the 10 th reg*, and a body of the 
enemy under the command of Colonel Norton of the 
guards. Our loss w r as 14 killed on the spot, including 
Cap* Roberts of the 15 th reg* (a brave and good officer) and 
17 wounded, three of whom are since dead, and 96 pris- 
oners. L fc Col Thompson (of Marshall's), Cap* Watson, 
of Greaton's, Cap* Lieu* Farley, of Wesson's, Lieu ts Bur- 
ley, of Tupper's, and Maynard, of Greaton's, Ensigns 
Fowler, of Nixon's, and Bradley, of Sheppard's, are 
among the later. The enemy acknowledge to have had 
five killed and 18 wounded. 

The promotions which have from time to time been 
made by the Hon. the General Assembly, and sent on to 

3 



34 THE IIEATn PAPERS. [1780. 

me, I have published in orders, and have sent on the 
certificates to the Hon. the Continental Board of War. 

I hope before the opening of the next campaign to 
have the honor of takeing you by the hand in Boston ; 
indeed the present state of my health is such as requires 
a change of air and some relaxation. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Honor's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon. Jere h Powell, Esquire. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ROBERT HOWE* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb^ 18 th , 1780. 

Sir, — The present state of my health is such as has 
obliged me to obtain from his Excellency General Wash- 
ington, a leave of absence and relaxation from business 
for a short time. I shall accordingly sit out for New Eng- 
land on Monday next, when the command of the posts 
and troops on the North River will devolve on you. I 
herewith enclose you a coppy of my instructions from the 
Commander in Chief, and am assured of your particular 
attention to every part of them. 

The troops have been exceedingly straitned for bread 
during the winter, but from the unremiting endeavour 
which I have made in every quarter a supply for a time 
I think is ensured. A quantity of flour is coming on 
from Easton and Sussex County. I have also repre- 



* Robert Howe was born in Brunswick County, N. C, in 1732, and died there Nov. 12, 
1785. On the breaking out of the Revolution he joined the American arm}', and rendered 
distinguished service at the South. In October, 1777, he was commissioned a Major- 
General, and was subsequently attached to the army of Washington. In 1780, during the 
absence of General Heath, he had the command at West Point ; and in 1781 he was at the 
head of the troops who quelled the mutiny of the Pennsylvania and New Jersey regiments. 
In 1783 he performed a similar duty in quelling the mutiny of the soldiers who threatened 
Congress. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. iii. pp. 282, 283. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. ^^-j- <-» 35 

11G9718 

sented the situation of the army to his Excellency Gover- 
nor Clinton and the Legislature of the State of New York, 
and have just received intimations from the Governor 
that the matter is under the consideration of a com- 
mittee, and that no exertions in the power of the Legis- 
lature would be wanting. You will perceive the necessity 
of procuring if possible ample supplies against an emer- 
gency. As the quantity of salted meat in the magazines 
is not great, fresh beef must be procured and issued for 
some time yet to come, and the salt provisions reserved. 

Many of the works are yet unfinished ; the compleat- 
ing of them must be attended to the moment the season 
will admit of it, — in particular the north redoubt and 
the works at King's Ferry. The former has been much 
injured by repeated fires ; the works at the latter were 
stoped by the severe season. I need not observe of how 
much importance it is that these works be repaired and 
compleated before the enemy can be in motion, as one 
of them in particular is of easy access by water. The 
sudden severity of the season prevented the efT'ectualy 
securing of many of the boats ; much attention must be 
had to them before the ice breaks up, or they will be 
swept away. I have mentioned this to Col Hay, but 
you will please to bear it in mind ; you will be happy in 
the assistance and exertions of that officer, a better 
support you cannot wish for or desire. 

M r Read, the D.P.M.G., is at New Windsor with the 
military chest. He has in his hands a sum of money for 
the recruiting service. Upon the application of the com- 
manding officers of reg fc or corps for money for that pur- 
pose, they are to exhibit a list of the soldiers' names 
respectively reinlisted by them, on which a warrant on 
the paymaster is drawn. The troops have been lately 
paid up to the first of Nov r . If a relaxation from busi- 
ness and change of air should have that effect which I 
hope for I shall return to this post as early as possible. 



36 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

If it should not the time of my return is uncertain. 
Wishing you health and an easy and agreable command, 
I am, with great regard, Sir, 

Your most obedient serv*. 

Major Gen 1 Howe. W. HeATH, M. G. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Roxbury, March 2 nd , 1780. 

Dear General, — I arrived here the day before 
yesterday after a very tedious journey through excessive 
bad roads. 

I find there is a great number of discharged soldiers in 
this State, who have been at home for some weeks, that 
are inclined to inlist again, but as many of them came 
home almost naked, and remain so still, a principal in- 
ducement to their inlisting is the expectation of being 
immediately clothed. This is represented to me by Col 
Crane and others. I request to be informed whether 
the recruits can be clothed here by an order from the 
clothier general through the sub or State clothier. If 
they can, the recruiting service may be very successfully 
but if they cannot be clothed, it will be impossible to 
march them on in their present naked condition. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THE COUNCIL OF MASSACHUSETTS. 

Roxbury, March 3 rd , 1780. 

Gentlemen, — I arrived at this place the 29 th ulto. 
after a very fatigueing journey through excessive bad 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 156, 157. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 37 

roads. A relaxation from business and a change of air 
became absolutely necessary for the recovery of my 
health. On my first arrival being informed that many 
soldiers who have been indulged with furloughs during 
the winter (some of which are already expired) were 
still in Boston, I determined to order the latter on imme- 
diately to joyn their respective corps, which are daily 
growing weaker by the discharges of those whose times 
of service expire, and which makes the return of these 
indispensible ; but upon takeing measures for the purpose 
I find the soldiers have had intimations or promises from 
some in authority, either civil or military or both, that 
they shall receive the notes for the depreciation of their 
pay before they leave Boston, and upon which they 
depend. This prevents my ordering them on in the 
manner the service requires, which is without the least 
delay, and at the same time may be materially injured if 
the soldiers are forced away under present circumstances. 
To the wisdom of the Hon. Council I therefore beg leave 
to submit the necessity of the most speedy measures being 
taken to have these soldiers forwarded, and if possible 
without any grounds of uneasiness and discontent. 

From various reports that I have received from the 
officers the present is a most favorable oppertunity for 
the recruiting your battalions; permit me to express a 
wish that it may be improved. There is now great 
numbers of discharged soldiers in and about Boston, and 
indeed throughout the State, whom no persuasions could 
induce to reinlist before they came home. They have 
visited their friends, they are now out of business, are 
destitute of money and clothing, the times difficult, and 
the demand for labourers not yet come. Some *employ- 
ment they must seek for a support. They discover an 
inclination to reingage in the army, a proper attention 
at this moment will redound much to the honor and 
interest of the State, their quota of troops may be soon 



38 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

raised, and upon more advantageous terms than at any 
other period ; for if these men are not now engaged, 
necessity will soon lead them to enter on board ships 
of war, or the approaching season for cultivating the 
fields will lead the farmers to engage many of them 
earlier than usual. The consequence will be the battal- 
ions incompleat, and if recourse is had to drafts from 
the militia for their compleation, your Honors are fully 
sensible with how much expense and inconvenience to 
towns and to individuals it is attended, and commonly 
at a season that proves injurious to the husbandry of 
the country, and has been most sensibly felt both by the 
citizens and army in a scarcity of provisions encreased by 
such untimely drafts. 

The reinlistment of your soldiers in the army was at 
first very successfull. It has not been equally so since, 
altho some are daily mlisting. I have the honor to en- 
close the last return that I received of the men inlisted 
to serve during the war in the 15 battalions. I wish the 
number was greater, but when it is considered that the 
officers of the whole Line of the State and several corps 
belonging to the State are not included in the return, and 
numbers have doubtless inlisted since, it must afford a 
sensible satisfaction that it is so large. 

I am informed by the officers that there is at present 
some impediments to the recruiting service which is 
principally the want of, or some difficulty in obtaining, 
bounty money and clothing for the recruits. The former 
can be remidied only by the Hon. the Council or General 
Assembly ; the latter I have since my arrival here repre- 
sented to his Excellency General Washington, and soli- 
cited that measures may be adopted for clothing the 
recruits before they march, if it can be done consistantly 
with the present system of clothing the army. I hope 
the answer will be favorable, or perhaps your Honors 
have power to direct in this particular also. 



1780.] WILLIAM- HEATH. 39 

I flatter myself the time is not far distant when the 
toilsom business of war, in which your Honors have had 
so large a share, will terminate in the independence, 
peace, and happiness of our country. 

With every sentiment of respect and esteem, I have 
the honor to be, 

Your Honors' most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon. the Council. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO MICHAEL JACKSON* 

Roxbury, March 15 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 29 th ult° and postscript 
of the 4 th instant came to hand this day. The report 
you made of the mistakes in the commissions of the offi- 
cers of your regiment, I carefully transmitted to his 
Excellency General Washington before I left the High- 
lands, observed to him the reasons of the mistakes hav- 
ing happened, and requested his direction in what way 
the matter should be taken up ; hope it will be done in 
such manner as to establish peace and harmony in the 
regiment. 

I am sorry to hear that any of the officers are out of 
humour, or that you have any disponding moments ; you 
must as I have often been forced to do act the phylospher, 
as well as the soldier. I hope to be with you by and by 
when I will administer every comfort and assistance in 
my power. Cap* Keith is promoted to the Majority in 
your regiment; I have given him his warrant. Present 
my compliments to M rs Jackson, your family, and all 
friends. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, your obedient serv fc . 

Col° Mich l Jackson. W. HeATH. 

* Michael Jackson was born in Newton Dec. 18, 1734, and died there April 10, 1801. 
He was present at the battle of Bunker Hill, and served with credit throughout the war. 
See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. iii. p. 390 ; Mass. Soldiers and 
Sailors in the Revolution, vol. viii. p. 681. — Eds. 



40 TEE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

P. S. I am sorry to hear that there is any clamour on 
the east side of the river against a favorite Col , as you 
say he is called. Whether by this it is meant a favorite 
of mine or not I cannot say, but be assured if I have any 
favorites they must be those who carefully attend their 
duty in every place and in every station. Such are my 
favorites; while those that neglect it, be their names, 
stations, or abodes what or where they may, will never 
have either my favor or patronage, and as the char- 
acter which is delineated by the most forced construc- 
tion cannot apply to any favorite of mine, it must mean 

some other. 

VV. H. 



HENRY KNOX* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Morris Town, 17 th March, 1780. 

My dear Sir, - — I received your favor of the 14 th 
ultimo. From long experience I am fully sensible of the 
merits of M r Barber, t and have by the desire of the 
Board of War offer'd to him the place of principal field 
commissary of military stores, a post of considerable emolu- 
ments and great importance. I have some reasons to 
believe, that he would prefer some place which would 
permit his residence in the town of Boston, and that 
should have commissions annex'd to the performance of 
its duties. There is no such place that I know of in the 
ordnance department. 

Congress have not yet done any thing in consequence 
of our address to them ; if they think on the subject at 
all the result must be that we have the properties of the 

* Henry Knox was born in Boston Jul}' 25, 1750, and died in Thomaston, Maine, Oct. 
25, 1806. lie received a good education, and in early life was a bookseller in his native 
town. He warmly espoused the American cause, and giving up his business joined the 
army immediately after the battle of Lexington, and took a conspicuous and important 
part down to the close of the war. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, 
vol. iii. pp. 565-567; F. S. Drake's Life and Correspondence of Henry Knox. — Eds. 

t Nathaniel Barber, Jr., of Boston. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 41 

camelion, and can subsist on air. However I will acquit 
them of the crime of thinking of us in the smallest degree. 

I have heard that the State of Massachusetts have 
given to its general officers certificates that the depre- 
ciation shall be made good to them. If so, I will thank 
you to ascertain, whether I am regarded as belonging 
to that State, and if I do not, what State I do belong 
to. Pray write me, and let me know what are the views 
and prospects of the present day ; whether avarice pre- 
vades ail classes and degrees of men or whether it is 
con fin' d to particular classes and who these classes are. 

You know my claims on the late estate of M r Flucker.* 
I will thank you to enquire what prospects or reliance I 
shall place in the expectation of receiving part of it. I 
have two petitions now before the House which I expect 
may be decided on soon. 

The affairs of Ireland will be a pretty addition to the 
embarrasment of England and will, I hope, produce a 
speedy peace for America. 

I beg you to present my respectful compliments to 
M rs Heath, and believe me to be 

Your sincere friend and humble servant. 

H. Knox. 

My aid, Shaw, will deliver you this ; his merit is such 
as to entitle him to any honor, and I beg leave to rec- 
ommend him to your esteem. 

General Heath. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON-! 

Roxbury, March 27 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours 
of the 2 nd instant, respecting Cap* Cartwright and beg 

* Thomas Flucker, the last Secretary of the Province of Massachusetts Bay. He was 
the father-in-law of General Knox, and was named in the Massachusetts Confiscation 
Act. —Eds. 

t Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 157-159. — Eds. 



42 THE IIEATII PAPERS. [1780. 

your Excellency to accept my thanks for your determi- 
nation respecting him. 

A resolve of the Hon. the General Assembly of this 
State, of which the enclosed is coppy, was sent to me 
the 24 th instant. I am endeavouring to detain three 
commissioned officers and one serj* from each reg* be- 
longing to the Massachusetts Line for the purpose ex- 
pressed in the resolve, but as your Excellency's orders 
required the officers to joyn their respective corps by the 
first of April, which is nearly arrived, I apprehend the 
number proposed will not now be found in the State. If 
your Excellency should approve the measure, will it not 
be expedient to have the number mentioned immediately 
compleated, or increased, by sending a number of officers 
from West Point ? As the companies are very weak I 
beg leave to submit to your Excellency whether a num- 
ber of officers will not be more essentially employed on 
this than on any other service at this time. If your Ex- 
cellency should approve of it I would request a significa- 
tion of your pleasure to Major General Howe on the 
subject, as soon as may be convenient. 

The plan which I have proposed in consequence of 
the Resolve is, to have the recruiting officers dispersed 
throughout the State, and assidiously apply themselves 
to recruiting. The premium given by the State is very 
generous and will be an inducement to exertion, the 
recruits as soon as mustered to be sent to Boston, Worces- 
ter, or Springfield as may be nearest or most convenient, 
a commissioned officer, one of the three retained, begin- 
ing with one from the eldest regiment, to march from 
Boston every Monday with such recruits, soldiers whose 
furloughs are out, and deserters as may be found at that 
rendezvous, with which the officer is to proceed to 
Worcester and Springfield, and having collected those 
from the last mentioned places, to West Point and de- 
liver the recruits, & c ? to the corps to which they respec- 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 43 

tively belong. Any other mode shall be adopted which 
your Excellency may think proper to direct. 

There are at present two impediments in the way of 
successfully recruiting; one is the want of money for the 
continental bounty, the other clothing for the recruits. 
There is in the hands of M r Deputy Pay M. G. Hancock 
a small sum of public monies. Colonel Crane, who has 
inlisted upwards of thirty men, is applying to me to ob- 
tain from M r Hancock a sum to pay the continental 
bounty to those men. I have informed him that upon his 
presenting a list of the men's names and a certificate that 
they have not received their continental bounty, I will 
desire M r Hancock to advance the sum necessary, but 
that I have no right to order it. As to clothing the re- 
cruits immediately upon their inlisting, or before they 
march through the country, your Excellency is sensible 
that nothing will have a greater tendency to please the 
recruits or more induce others to inlist. Indeed, Colo. 
Crane informs me that some of the recruits are so desti- 
tute of clothing that they actually suffer in the barracks. 
This will tend to wound the service at a stage of the 
recruiting when every thing should conspire to promote 
it. Shoes, hose, and shirts can be obtained from the 
State store, but coats, vest, breeches, blankets, and hatts 
cannot. I request your Excellency's opinion and direc- 
tion on the several matters before mentioned. 

A ship, prize to the Dean frigate, arrived at Boston a 
few days since, with between 4 and 500 puncheons of 
rum, & c , and on the 23 rd ins* a ship, prize to the Aurora of 
Marblehead, arrived at that port, laden with 1,600 barrells 
flour, 1,400 barrells beef and pork, and some dry goods. 

1 have the honor to be, with greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



44 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



JOHN PATERSON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, March 31 st , 1780. 

Sir, — I received your favor of the 9 th March, have 
sent to the commanding officers of the 4 th and 15 th battal- 
ions, and shall as soon as they come to hand send the 
certificates to the Board of War. 

Our supplies are yet very scanty, — the forage has 
been gone thise fourteen days and but a little flour. The 
river has been open three weeks ; the chain will be down 
to morrow. We have been making every exertion in our 
power to put the works in a state of defence against an 
attack which the enemy are loudly threatning; but we 
are now like a man who has arrived to the age of three 
score years and ten, his eyes dim, his hearing gone, 
his limbs paralytic, depending on a broken cane which 
wounds his hand instead of supporting the feeble body. 
This in fact is the case with the shattered remains of the 
once respectable line from the State of the Massachusetts 
Bay. We once had a respectable soldiery, the men in 
high spirits, they then had confidence in the justice and 
generosity of their country, in which confidence they 
fought, they conquered, they endured hardships, cold, 
hunger, and every other inconvenience w T ith pleasure. 
But alas the reverse in every particular is the case with 
us at present. Our officers resigning by dozens, our men 
for during the war at home waiting (but in vain) for jus- 
tice, what remain are mostly composed of nine months' 
abortions, sent here with bounties which ten times exceed ! 
those given for the war, naked, lifeless, and dead, who i 
never saw action, are now counting days, hours, and I 
minutes they have to tarry in service. 

Recruiting is now intirely at an end. The parsimony 
(I will not say dishonesty) of the Court has entirely pre- 
vented it. Our reports from credible persons are that ! 



1780.] JOHN PATERSON". 45 

the Court are so lost to every sentiment of humanity as 
to stop eaven the small pittance given by the towns and 
private gentlemen to the poor soldiery as a small (indeed 
very small recompence) in some measure to counterbal- 
lance their excessive fatigues, fasting, and hardships. 
Every one must know that making up the depreciation 
is only making good the wages they had promised and 
pawned the honor and credit of the State they should 
receive as an incouragement to enter the service. Tak- 
ing the bounties out of it (with a number of other in- 
couragements given from time to time by Congress) is 
such a manifest and opened faced injustice that it is be- 
neath a man of sense to use arguments to confute it. 

You may, perhaps, think this picture is too high 
eoulered, but be assured, my dear Gen 1 , that there is 
now an intention making head very fast in the line of 
all resigning and leaving the service. Should this take 
place (as I assure you I have reason to believe will) the 
consequence I am certain will be fatal. You must con- 
jecture what spirits I can have from this. We have it 
from the best intelligence the enemy mean suddenly to 
attack us at this post (tho' the intellegence and the way 
it comes to us at present must be secret), yet I am sure 
of it. We cannot from the two brigades here muster 
more than seven hundred men, the two on the other side 
I believe about equal ; out of them one third at least will 
have served out their time within three weeks. From 
this representation, which is in fact the truth, you must 
judge of the defence that can be made. You may rest 
assured that from my past sufferings from an ungrateful 
I country I shall never give my consent to give up the 
post as long as my own or a man's life is left. It realy 
gives me pain to think of our public affairs ; where is 
the public spirit of the year 1775? where are those flam- 
ing patriots who were ready to sacrifise their lives, their 
fortunes, their all, for the public? I can point some of 



46 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

them out in the Court, telling the people that the army 
are the only persons they have reason to fear, throwing 
their weight into the scale against those who have fought, 
bled, and eaven the widows of those who have been 
killed in the service of their country ; but drawing the 
picture gives me pain in writing, and I am sure it will 
you in reading. 

The enemy lately made an attack on our advanced 
troops at Pyramus, but were drove back, with the loss 
of some killed, wounded, and made prisoners, after burn- 
ing; the Court house and some other buildings at Hackin- 
sack. This is all the news we have except, as I have 
said before, that preparations were making at New York 
which by every account is designed against this post. 
Inclosed you have a receipt for twenty six thousand one 
hundred and ninty pounds lawfull money, which was the 
sum I actually rece d . I have paid it all to the command- 
ing officers of regiments but five thousand nine hundred 
and twenty nine pounds which still remains on hand. I 
believe no more will be wanted here, nor do I think that 
the officers will have occasion to dispose of the twentieth 
part of what they have got except they pay it to the old 
soldiers. 

I am, dear General, your humble serv*. 

John Paterson. 

Honble. Maj r Gen 1 Heath. 



ROBERT HOWE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Highlands, March 31 st , 1780. 

I was, my dear Sir, begining to adopt fears that you 
had forgotten me, when your favour of the 15 th ins* 
(which arrived this morning) prevented my realizing an 
opinion, which would have given me great anxiety. 

I feel so sensibly wishes for your happiness, that I 



1780.] ROBERT HOWE. 47 

rejoice at your rinding your friends in health on your 
arrival, and most earnestly hope that the blessings of 
possessing an amiable consort may be continued to you, 
and the completion of your wishes in a hopeful progeny 
may crown your felicity, and fill the measure of your 
happiness. 

The embarrassments and disapointments which have 
attended us at this post have been various and manifold, 
and called for our every exertion to prevent the very 
annihilation of the army ; they are now, however, in 
some degree (but not wholly) surmounted. The motions 
of the enemy have for some time called for our attention, 
and have exerted our speculations. By their moveing 
over horse, infantry, and corps of artillery with all the 
aparatus for field action to Staten Island, and by their 
collection of boats, and from some other preparations, 
their intention seemed to point towards Morris Town. 
Tho' some persons thought this post their object, the 
former opinion, however, was, I am perswaded, the pre- 
vailing one at Head Quarters ; for my part I thought 
that neither would be attempted, and event seems to 
verify my conjecture. A very faithful and intelligent 
emissary of mine in New York wrote me that tho' the 
enemy ware busy, and seemed preparing for enterprise, 
yet he thought their intention was to embarrass, perplex^ 
and alarm, and that they assumed the aspect of offensive 
operations to prevent our adopting them, and I fancy his 
opinion is well founded. I have, however, for reasons 
that must be obvious to you, held out to the troops 
the necessity of being in a constant state of readiness, 
i and tho' I am convinc'd that the enemy have at present 
no local object in view, yet the measures they are pur- 
suing, and intelligence I can confide in, make it certain 
that they mean to act with rigour when they can take 
the field. At present you need not be told that they 
cannot move out in force, but to effect things that are 



48 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

attainable by sudden execution alone, and as West Point 
is not to be obtained in that manner, and at this season 
they cannot keep the field, they will hardly (I should 
fancy) undertake it at present. The British embarka- 
tion for Charles Town are at last arrived, and are within 
fifteen miles of that city, and tho' they suffered a good 
deal by the storm, they have arrived in much better order 
than we wish'd or expected. They have taken post on 
James and John's islands, and appeared (when my friend 
wrote me) not to be intending to act immediately, proba- 
bly some of their store ships had not arrived ; may God 
of his infinite mercy disapoint them at all points. The 
North Carolina troops had got up, and the Virginians 
were momentarily expected, and our people well pre- 
pared for obstinate contention, and in high spirits. Who 
would not be an actor upon so glorious a stage ? 

The decreasing state of our battalions, indeed the 
rapid decay of them, teems with horrid images, our best' 
men are leaving us every moment, and we shall soon be 
left with little more to act with than the nine months 
miscarriages ; for God sake, my d r Sir, exert yourself to 
the utmost to send up to us the men whose furloughs 
are out, and press on the recruiting service with all pos- 
sible zeal, in which you will most essentially serve your 
country. I hinted to you above that from every circum- 
stance I thought it certain that the enemy meant to act 
with vigour this ensuing campaign; you know I per- 
swade myself that my intelligence is good, and the best 
I have induces me to think so. This makes it almost 
certain that they will not exhaust themselves by trifling 
enterprises, or take the field until they can do it with 
effect; it calls, Sir, for the immediate and serious atten- 
tion and the strenuous endeavours of every State to 
have the army in a situation to counteract these designs ; 
let it not be said that the detachments they have sent 
out have so weakned them that they have not numbers 



1780.] ROBERT HOWE. 40 

to act offensively. The idea is obnoxious to public 
good, and is not founded in fact. 

The decline of our army from the expiration of inlist- 
ments alone makes the enemy comparatively stronger 
for this campaign than they were in the last, and when 
added to this we consider the divisions of North Carolina 
and Virginia troops, with the corps of horse, sent to South 
Carolina, it will demonstrate the necessity there is for 
the utmost efforts of every State to complete the army 
as rapidly as possible. 

It is a serious truth, tho' it may not generally be 
understood or believed, that the British troops now in 
New York and its vicinity are not less than sixteen thou- 
sand effectives ; the Gen ls commanding there are Knup 
Bauson and Tryon, the former I am told was always accus- 
ing of Sir Henry Clinton of inactivity, and from his fond- 
ness for Gen 1 Tryon is entirely under his influence. The 
character of Tryon has been, I find, in this country very 
much misunderstood ; the avowed enmity between him 
and Clinton has kept him out of every command that 
was respectable enough to call forth his abilities. I, Sir, 
have serv'd with him, and from the most intimate ac- 
quaintance with him know that he is not only brave, 
but that he is an officer of enterprise and resources, ambi- 
tious to excel, and possess'd with an enthusiastic lust 
for fame, he will therefore catch at this campaign as the 
only opportunity that has been or perhaps will be lent 
him to operate with vigour, and every proceeding since 
he has been in command warrants this opinion. The 
enterprise against our troops at Elizabeth Town and 
Newark in New Jersey, also against Thomson, and the 
success of them, the very clever scheme the other day 
to draw out our troops upon the lines to Elizabeth Town, 
while they were manuavring to surround them, and the 
adventure to surprise those at Parramus, three or four 
days ago, tho' both unsuccessful, discovers a genius in 



50 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

the guidance of their measures which has not been dis- 
cernable for some time previous to this man's taking 
command, and presages what may be expected of him, 
and should induce us to prepare accordingly. 

The very spirited, liberal, and patriotic measures your 
respectable Legislature have pursued, and are pursuing, 
give the most promising hopes of their filling their quotas, 
and forcibly prove that they want no stimulous, but the 
deserved influence they have over other States induces 
me to express a wish that they would exert it to forward 
the re-establishment of our army upon which I conceive 
so much to depend. 

In respect to the address you speak of, I have heard 
that it is almost immediately to be taken up, and its 
several objects attended to. I have now, Sir, I am 
much afraid, tired you, and that I may not render the 
perusal of this letter still more fatiguing to you, by 
giving you the trouble of expanding my hieroglyphicks, 
I have contrary to my intentions at first, got Maj r Long- 
born to decypher them.* My family present respectful 
compliments, and am, d r Sir, with every wish for your 
happiness, 

Your most ob* hum 1 servant. 

Eobert Howe. 



ROBERT HOWE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Highlands, 4 th April, 1780. 

Dear Sir, — The face of affairs have varied so little 
since I did myself the pleasure of writing you last that I 
am almost without a subject. The enemy remain also 
as they were, preparing to act vigorously when they do 
take the field, but not ready was the season even ad- 

* General Howe wrote such an illegible scrawl that it is almost impossible to decipher 
his writing; and it may almost be doubted whether he could have read the whole of any 
one of his own letters if he had laid it aside for a few months after it was written. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 51 

vanced enough for any immediate operation. Emissaries 
inform me that two battalions of Hanspach's regiment, 
the Langrave's, and General Brown's, and a regiment 
they do not recollect the name of, were embarking for 
Charles Town, where Clinton is said to be in no very 
enviable situation, and consequently stands in need of 
reinforcements. We have diminished so much, and are 
so daily growing weaker, that I have prevail d upon the 
General to let me call down General Poor's brigade, for 
without them it would have been impossible to proceed 
upon the works, which is an anxious circumstance to me, 
and must be so to every one. I beg and doubt not your 
exertions to hurry up the men with you, whose furloughs 
are out, that the works may be finished before the open- 
ing of the campaign. 

I am, dear Sir, with wishes for your happiness, 

Your most ob* serv*. 

R. Howe. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF 
MASSACHUSETTS. 

Roxbury, April 7 th , 1780. 

Gentlemen, — This morning I received a number of 
letters from the principal officers at West Point dated 
the 31 st ulto. and 1 st instant. The letters are so replete 
with representations of the uneasiness and discontent of 
the troops of your line that it would be criminal in me 
to conceal them. An officer of rank writes, " We have 
been makeing every exertion in our power to put the 
works in a state of defence against an attack which the 
enemy are loudly threatning, but we are now like a man 
who has arrived to the age of three score years and ten, 
his eyes dim, his hearing gone, his limbs paralytic, de- 
pending on a broken cane, which wounds his hand 
instead of supporting the feeble body. This in fact is the 



52 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

case with the shattered remains of the once respectable 
line from the State of Massachusetts Bay. We once had 
a respectable soldiery, the men in high spirits; they then 
had confidence in the justice and generosity of their 
country, in which confidence they fought, they conquered, 
they endured hardships, cold, hunger, and every other in- 
convenience with pleasure. But alas the reverse in every 
particular is the case with us at present. Our officers re- 
signing by dozens, our men for during the w r ar at home 
waiting for justice, what remain are mostly composed of 
nine months' men sent here with bounties which ten 
times exceed those given for the war, naked and lifeless, 
who never saw action, are now counting days, hours, and 
minutes they have to serve. Recruiting is now entirely 
at an end. Parsimony has entirely prevented it. Our re- 
ports from credible persons are that the Court stop even 
the small pittance given by the towns to the poor soldiery, 
as a small, indeed very small, recompence in some meas- 
ure to counterballence their excessive fatigues, fastings 
and hardships. Every one must know that makeing good 
the depreciation is only makeing good the wages they 
had promised and pawned the honor and credit of the 
State they should receive. Takeing out the bounties is 
such manifest injustice that it is beneath a man of sense 
to use arguments to refute it. Where is the publick 
spirit of the year 1775, where are those flaming patriots 
who were ready to sacrifice their lives, their fortunes, 
their all for the publick, are they throwing their weight 
into the scale against those who have fought, bled, and 
even the widows of those who have been killed in the ser- 
vice of their country ? but drawing the picture gives me 
pain in writing, and I am sure it will you in reading. You 
may, perhaps, think this picture is too high coloured, but 
be assured, my dear General, that there is now an inten- 
tion makeing head very fast in the line of all resigning and 
leaving the service. Should this take place (as I assure 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 53 

3^011 I have reason to believe will) the consequences I am 
certain will be fatal ; you must conjecture what spirits I 
can have from this." 

Another writes, " Things grow darker and darker, the 
cloud blackens, a universal murmur prevails, the officers do 
not complain one half so much on their own account as 
they do for the poor soldiers who have fought and bled 
for their country, will the Court stop their bounties ? 
I would ask this plain question, if the money had not 
altered, whether at the close of the war the Court ex- 
pected the soldiery would pay the bounties back again ? 
why don't the Court call upon those officers and soldiers 
who were at Stony Point to know what money they re- 
ceived, that it may be deducted from their pay? If the 
pay of the army is good, why is there not more in the 
field, why so many officers resigning ? Captains Varnum 
and Bancroft have resigned within these three days, 
with a great number of other good officers. I have not 
heard of one soldier inlisting for a month past, and you 
may depend upon it no more will inlist without better 
encouragement. I don't mean to paint things worse than 
they are, and upon my honor I have not sense and learn- 
ing enough to paint them in proper colours." 

If such are the prevailing sentiments and feelings of 
the army (and the channel through which I have received 
the information induces me to believe it), they are really 
alarming and demand attention. My intention at this 
time being only to represent to your Honors a state of 
facts reported to me, and which ought not to be kept 
from you, permit me only to add, that great statesman 
and politician as well as soldier his Prussian Majesty, who 
is well acquainted with humane nature, and of how much 
importance it is that there be no grounds of uneasiness 
or discontent in his army, strictly enjoyns that when 
any symptoms of it are apparent particular enquiry be 
made into the cause, and "ivhether the men have received their 



54 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

due/' and even when necessity requires a retrograde 
march to be made that it be concealed under some pre- 
text that will keep up the spirits of the soldiers. Another 
w T ho knew human nature better tells us hope deferred 
makes the heart sick, a malady that should ever be kept 
out of an army. The fatigues and sufferings of yours 
have been uncommonly great, and the spirit that has 
been exhibited by the soldiery under them are scarcely 
to be parralleled. Your Honors are fully sensible of how 
much importance it is at a time when the army cannot be 
made so completely comfortable in every respect as could 
be wished, that the least grounds for jealousy and dis- 
content should be most studiously avoided. The former 
part of the winter I flattered myself, and not without 
grounds, that the recruiting service would be very suc- 
cessful!, some unfortunate occurrences too apparent to 
need mentioning have for the present dashed my expec- 
tations. As a citizen and as a soldier I cannot but regret 
the loss of many veteran soldiers from the army (whose 
places cannot be filled with raw recruits) or that they 
should hereafter on an emergency be obtained on terms 
disadvantageous to the public, for I am not at loss to 
conjecture what will be consequent. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, 

Your Honors' most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon. the General Assembly. 



ROBERT HOWE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Highlands, 9 th April, 1780. 

I have nothing new, my dear Heath, to inform you of 
but that the five regiments of the enemy I mention'd to 
you are absolutely embark'd, tho not saild ; the object of 
the enemy's present aim is Carolina, and that their inten- 
tions (if they ever had them) against this place seem to 



1780.] ROBERT HOWE. 55 

be laid aside. I yet think that they will in the course 
of the summer act with all the energy they can, and / 
know they are stronger than the States seem to believe. 
I wish the confidence placed in their weakness may not 
have too much influence upon American measures. For 
my part, tho I am not apt as you well know to see things 
thro a gloomy medium, yet I never thought the opera- 
tions of Ireland much in oar favour. Their object, like 
all other political bodies, is their interest and a free trade. 
Consequently their continual aspirations. They have lain 
in wait for an opportunity to obtain it, and the virtuous 
efforts of America have furnish'd them with it. They 
have caught at the occasion, and will, I doubt not, succeed. 
This done it becomes their interest to keep America as a 
mart only to Great Britain and themselves ; and interest 
being the moving principle of all states, they will follow 
its dictates and act accordingly. A fig (I had like to 

have said a f 1) for all they have promis'd Franklin 

or Congress or any one else. Interest, I repeat, is the 
ruling passion of all states, and honour, generosity, and 
integrity are only used as stalking horses by which they 
get up to it, and that conduct which would render a private 
character infamous forever will in an aggregate body be 
applauded as a most laudable and admirable piece of 
address. It is, however, a high praise (as some body 
says) to honesty that every one likes to assume the 
garb of it, even when the end he has in view will 
prove him a villain, both to the world and his own 
heart. I have run into length when I ought to have 
avoided it, for I am in a hurry and in a crowd who are 
waiting for me. To read my letter over would take time. 
Excuse then all its errors, when you can decypher them, 
and take it with all its faults about it, as every one must 
take me, or they shall not have me at all. I have re- 
ceiv'd your letter containing the methods fallen upon 
by your trusty and very respectable State for recruiting 



56 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

their quota of men, and I am pleased that you are present 
to give energy to them, as nothing very particular at 
present claims your attention here. I shall, you may 
be assured, do every thing I can, or that you require, 
with pleasure. 

I am, dear Sir, with great regard and respect, 

Your most ob* serv*. 

R. Howe. 

P. S. I wish I had been born in your State. Can't 
you prevail upon them to adopt me, tho' it should be 
only as a bastard son ? God bless you ! 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ROBERT HOWE. 



Roxbury, April 14 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your very obliging favor of the 31 st ult° 
came to hand a few days since, and that of the 4 th instant 
this morning. I am happy to hear of your health and 
welfare, and thank you for the intelligence communi- 
cated. I think the enemy have not at present any 
serious intentions to visit West Point (it may be a part of 
their plan at another period should the war continue). 
Their second embarkation having sailed for Charlestown, 
will prevent any other capital offensive operations from 
New York ; indeed, I think Sir Henry Clinton will strive 
hard for Charlestown. I am not without some anxiety 
for its fate. I am not acquainted with its situation or 
defences, but am no friend to extensive works or lines; 
they require many troops for their defence, and com- 
monly if forced in one part the whole are lost, unless the 
garrison is sufficiently numerous to make a defence in 
the manner proposed by the King of Prussia. In con- 
structing works policy dictates that we turn every circum- 
stance of ground to advantage and make the best use of 



1.780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 57 

rivers, morasses, abatis, & c , which may render the works 
difficult of access, but it is not these obstacles but the 
troops which are to stop the enemy. The event of the 
southern expedition will be very important and inter- 
esting. If Charlestown is lost it will be a heavy blow to 
us, and if Sir Henry is defeated it will be a fatal blow 
to the enemy, a blow they will scarcely survive without 
new and large reinforcements. 

I have been hurrying off the furloughed soldiers who 
have been long detained for their money. I have been 
and still am endeavouring to spur the recruiting service, 
which would have been very successfull had not the Court 
very unfortunately stoped the bounty's given by the 
towns out of the depreciation money in the late settle- 
ment with the soldiers, which has created great murmer- 
ing and wounded recruiting exceedingly. I have just ad- 
dressed the General Assembly on the subject, and hope a 
remedy will yet be applied. We have no news of conse- 
quence ; the times or rather the people remain as distracted 
as ever, the prises of goods and all the necessaries of 
life are most exorbitantly dear; averice and extortion 
prevail. 

My family join in compliments to you and yours. 
I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obedient serV. 

Major Gen 1 Howe. W. HEATH. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ROBERT HOWE. 

Roxbury, April 25 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 9 th instant came to 
hand a day or two since. I hope America will derive 
more advantage from the uneasiness of Ireland than 
you seem to imagine. If she continues to insist on 
being independant (altho it is probable the powers of 



58 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

Europe will not allow it), it must force Great Britain 
into a negotiation, and by some late accounts from 
Europe, which you will find in the enclosed newspaper, 
it appears that Ireland is far from being satisfied with 
what has yet been done. A spirit of association seems 
also to be riseing in England. Heaven encrease it. The 
Dean frigate and all her prizes are safely arrived ; the 
one laden with fruit, &c, is said to have gone into a port 
in Connecticut. 

My health is much repaired. I begin, to think of 
returning. 

I am, with much esteem, dear Sir, yours sincerely, 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I am happy to find you entertain so high an 
opinion of my native State. I assure you that if you 
get adopted by her, if it be only as a bastard son, I will 
most chearfully cultivate the affinity, and consider you 
as really legitimate. W. H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ROBERT HOWE. 

Roxbury, April 26 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 17 th instant, enclosing 
extract of a letter from his Excellency General Washing- 
ton, is just put into my hand. I have not received an 
answer from his Excellency to my last to him on the 
subject of recruiting, but momentarily expect it. If this 
State should fail of raising their quota of troops by inlist- 
ment I apprehend they will oblige each town to furnish 
its quota by a certain time. The furloughed soldiers are 
marched and marching, as are also some few recrnits. 

By a vessel in 19 days from Carolina we learn the 
enemy had got their sniping over the bar, but had made 
no new movements with their army ; that our frigates 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 59 

were hauled up, their guns taken out and mounted on a 
battery or batteries ; the garrison of Charlestown numer- 
ous and in high spirits; that the enemy had lost one of 
their 64 gun ships in chaseing one of their own frigates 
through mistake. By a vessel from Martinico we learn 
that a large French fleet with a body of land forces had 
arrived in the West Indies ; that it was rumoured five sail 
of the line French, and the like number of Spanish, with 
a number of frigates and some thousands land forces, are 
to act on our coast. Heaven hasten them to the succour 
of Charlestown, and then on. I view our present situa- 
tion in much the same light you do, but we must deter- 
mine to rise superior to every obstacle, and altho Great 
Britain may be determined to die very hard, yet such 
will be the fate of her sovereignty in the thirteen States. 
I wish our ruling powers by an exertion at this time 
would accelerate her exit. 

I most sincerely thank you for writing me so frequently, 
by which, I assure you, I have learnt to decypher your 
hierogliphicks with ease and pleasure ; intreat you to 
continue the favor. I will endeavour not to be in debt 
to you on this score. Please accept the compliments of 
my family, and present them to yours. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Affectionately yours. 

Major Gen 1 Howe. W. HEATH. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, April 30th, 1780. 

Dear General, — I was some time since honored with 
yours of the 28 th ult°, respecting clothing for the recruits, 
and this morning with that of the 17 th instant. Several 
officers have already come from West Point on the re- 
cruiting service, and others are on the road. I wish 
they may be successfull, but am much at loss from the 



60 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

tenor of your Excellency's letter to determine what 
bounty the recruits raised by this State (Massachusetts) 
are to receive. It seems the continental bounty after the 
act of March, 1779, was to be two hundred dollars. The 
General Assembly of this State on the 30 th of Sep* last 
passed the following resolution, viz*, u Resolved that a 
bounty of three hundred dollars, in addition to the bounty 
and subsistance money allowed by Congress, be paid to 
each non-commissioned officer and soldier who has or 
shall inlist as one of this State's quota of the continental 
army during the continuance of the present war between 
the United States of America and Great Britain." This 
bounty appears to be intended over and above the con- 
tinental bounty, and extended to all the soldiers belong- 
ing to their quota of the army inlisted at any preceeding 
period. I purpose to-morrow to lay the matter before the 
Assembly, who, it is probable, may have received some 
particular instructions on the subject, or at least may con- 
duct as they think proper. 

On Sunday last two privateers belonging to Salem (the 
Franklin and Jack) sent into that port a large letter-of- 
marque ship having on board 1,000 bbs. pork and beef, 
750 bbs. flour, 800 firkins butter, and dry goods to the 
amount of £15,000. 

A Doctor Apedale, lately come from New York to Bos- 
ton, and some time before from Canada to New T York, 
reports that before he left Canada it w r as said that about 
1,000 regulars and Tories, with as many Indians as could 
be collected and would joyn them, were to make an excur- 
sion on our frontiers on the Mohawk River as soon as the 
season was suitable, in two divisions under the command 
of Johnson and Butler, and that Lieu* Col Stacey was 
held a prisoner in Canada with a view to be exchanged 
for Johnson or Butler should either of them happen to be 
taken. How much credit is to be given to this report 
your Excellency may be able best to determine. 



1780.] JOHN PATERSON. CI 

I have the happiness to forward this by Major-Gene nil 
Marquis de la Fayette, who arrived at Boston on the 28 th 
instant, where he was received with every demonstration 

of joy. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



JOHN PATERSON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Public Service. Honble Maj r General Heath. Boston. 

West Point, Sunday evening, 7 th May, 1780. 

Sir, — The iniquities of America are so many and of 
such a nature that in reason we cannot, or at least ouo;ht 
not to, expect success, unless like the waggoner we pray 
the gods to help our carriage out of the mire without 
any exertions of our own. 

Our army reduced to nothing, no recruits have arrived, 
neither do I hear of any coming. I cannot conceive 
what ideas possess the minds of the people at home, — 
do they think the war at an end ? If they do, per- 
haps to inform them that a sixty four, fifty, and eight 
frigates are in the harbour at Charlestown, and that all 
our naval armament has fallen into their hands, may 
alter their opinions for the present. This you may de- 
pend is the case, and that an account of the capture of 
the town is hourly expected, with the return of S r Harry 
to New York, when an immediate attack on this post will 
inevitably be the consequence. They will have perfectly 
answered their purpose by drawing a large proportion of 
our force at such a distance that it will make it impos- 
sible for them to act again this season in conjunction 
with us. This intelligence you may depend upon ; I 
have it from Congress and a person of distinction at 
Morristown, tho at present only whispered in camp. 



62 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

It is indeed very discouraging to the army, our num- 
bers are so reduced that we cannot call ourselves an 
army. This you must be sensible of from your knowl- 
edge of our situation before you left us. Indeed the 
officers begin to think the country do not intend to sup- 
port either them or the cause, and will, as they say, get 
out of the scrape as soon as possible, unless supported 
with men. 

I have but a moment to write you but could not in 
justice to our bleeding cause wait ; beg you to exert 
yourself in the affair ; you have influence and I am 
certain will use it for the common good. We are now 
reduced to half allowance, every man on duty, our num- 
bers daily lessening. Some regiments at present consist 
of fifty men only ; with that body of men and the sup- 
plies of the garrison you can judge of the defence that 
can or ought to be expected from us. 

I wish to hear by the next express from the southward 
that our troops have escaped, but I assure you it is not 
expected. 

If this loss will rouse the country to exert its natural 
strength I shall not regret, but if not I must conclude 
they have lost all their virtue (or never had any) and 
that the cause is tottering on the brink of ruin. 

I have not time to copy this or eaven to look it over, 
you must therefore excuse all inaccuracies and believe 
me to be 

Yours, with respect and esteem. 

John Paterson. 

Honbl e Maj r Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, May 28 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I am this evening honored with 
yours of the 15th instant handed to me by the Hon ble M r 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 63 

Bowdoin.* No endeavours shall be wanting to obtain the 
intelligence required. A flag is now in the harbour from 
Hallifax. A gentleman who came and is to return in the 
flag has business to transact with M r Bowdoin. I have 
requested M r Bowdoin to ask several questions respecting 
the works, garrison, ships, & c , which questions from him 
probably will not cause suspicion, but be considered rather 
to proceed from curiosity. The gentleman is a person of 
character, and M r Bowdoin supposes a real friend to our 
cause. I think a Colonel Allen, who is superintendant of 
Indian affairs at Machias, and whose father and friends, 
if I mistake not, live in Hallifax, will be able to obtain 
and give me some particular and interesting intelligence. 
The moment any is obtained it shall be forwarded. But 
I fear the enemy have already apprehensions of the in- 
tention of our allies, for by intelligence just received here 
a number of transports lately sailed from New York, said 
to have about 2,000 troops on board destined for Canada, 
probably Hallifax or Penobscot, and it is reported that 
they have been since seen standing to the eastward. 

Yesterday my baggage was packed up and was to sit 
out early to-morrow morning for the Highlands, indeed, 
I should have sit out before this time had not the un- 
easiness, debility, and wants of the Massachusetts Line, 
almost weekly represented to me by the officers, detained 
me and urged my endeavours to have them quieted, 
strengthened, and releived, but the season is so far ad- 
vanced that I could not think of staying longer. I shall 
now attend to the objects of your Excellency's letter ; at 
the same time request to be informed in your next 
whether I shall repair to the Highlands or wait your 
further orders here. 

Our last accounts from Charlestown are to the 27 th ult°. 
The place was then safe, and the garrison in high spirits. 

* Washington's letter was printed by Mr. Sparks in his edition of the "Writings of 
George Washington," vol, vii. pp. 36-38. —Eds. 



64 TIIE IIEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

The enemy had received a very severe repulse on the 
22 nd ult° in an attack on our lines. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, May 31 st , 1780. 

Dear General, — Since I had the honor of writing 
you on the 28 th instant I have been endeavouring to 
obtain intelligence of the situation of the enemy at 
Hallifax, & c . I learn that their naval force not long 
since consisted of one ship of 74 guns, one of 20, one 
sloop of war, and two or three privateers. General 
M c Lane, a vigilant officer, commands the land forces, 
which are said to consist of six reg ts , each about 500 
strong, four of which are at Hallifax, the other two at 
different posts in the province. The militia of the town 
is said to be about eleven hundred. 

From a gentleman of the strictest probity and warmest 
attachment to our cause, and who has made upwards 
of forty voyages from Boston to Hallifax, I learn that 
when he was last there, which was a little before the 
commencement of hostilities, the enemy had a strong 
work on George's Island at the entrance of the harbour, 
about half a mile from the center of the town, a battery 
opposite George's Island on the west side about half 
a mile from the center of the town, and about the same 
distance from George's Island, a battery on the east side 
about two miles below or without George's Island, a 
battery also at the town. The ship yard and arsenal 
about a mile above the town, where there is a battery. 
The bason begins just above the ship yard, and extends 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 65 

up about six miles northerly, from east to west between 
three and four miles. Above the navy yard was a block 
house at a place called the Narrows. The citadel is on a 
high hill back of the town at the distance of a quarter 
of a mile, and commands both the town and harbour. 
The bason is very spacious, capable, perhaps, to contain 
the whole navy of England. 

I have just called at the Hon ble Mr. Bowdoin's. lie 
has procured a chart of the harbour of Hallifax, has 
made several enquiries of the gentleman I mentioned in 
my last, who I believe without the least suspicion an- 
swered every [one] of them. M r Bowdoin is now makeing 
some minutes explanatory of the chart ; and the informa- 
tion he has received from the gentleman, the chart, and 
minutes he will forward by to-morrow's or the next post 
to your Excellency. I am looking out for the best pilots ; 
believe shall find a number very good ones. By the last 
accounts from Penobscot there was appearances of an 
evacuation, or the removal of a part of the ordnance and 
troops to some other place. The garrison at Penobscot 
at present is by no means strong, at most not more than 
400. Cap* La Touch of his Most Christian Majesty's 
frigate the Hermione in his late cruize ran into Penob- 
scot Bay, where he lay for some time, made several 
signals, and took a plan of the works which he has for- 
warded to the minister at Philadelphia. It is said that 
the appearance of this frigate in the Bay has caused a 
great consternation and alarm. I have just established 
a correspondence with General Wadsworth, who com- 
mands the troops in the eastern part of this State, and 
with Colonel Allan at Machias; have requested every 
peice of intelligence they may be able to obtain, either 
from Hallifax or Penobscot. 

The last evening I received most alarming accounts 
from West Point of the scantiness of provisions and rum 
at that post. A quantity of the latter is on the road 

5 



66 THE IIEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

to Springfield. Since I have been here I have been 
endeavouring to promote the recruiting service all in 
my power, but the Court unfortunately stoping the 
towns' bounties in settlement with the soldiers has almost 
totally prevented inlistments. The new Assembly con- 
vened this day. I apprehend they will go any lengths 
that are recommended to complete their quota, even by 
draft if they cannot otherwise be obtained. I wish to 
know your Excellency's pleasure whether I shall urge it, 
and how far. 

The issuing commissary here informs me that there is 
upwards of 900 quintals of dry cod fish in the stores, a 
considerable part of which will be in danger of spoiling 
in the course of the summer if it is not issued. What 
pity it is that the army in their present straits cannot 
be releived by it. 

A report prevails to-day that the Trumbull frigate and 
a French ship have retaken the Iris, formerly the Han- 
cock frigate, off Sandy Hook ; hope it will be confirmed. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 






MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

On the Heigths of Springfield, 11 June, 1780. 

Dear Sir, — As I understand the General has desired 
you to stop at Providence, and there to receive the 
French land and naval forces that are coming to that 
port, I beg leave to adress you this confidential letter, 
which I shall send as soon as a good opportunity may 
offer. 

My meaning is not to point out any thing which may 
be done towards the helping the French troops, as I 



1780.] MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. f 67 

know from experience that they will meet from you with 
all possible aid and civility. 

I only desire as an American soldier and one that looks 
upon you as an intimate friend, to give you some pre- 
vious hints about the people who are coming, and com- 
municate to you such ideas as derive from my thorough 
knowledge of theyr manners, prejudices, &c, &c. 

The fleet is commanded by the Chevalier de Ternay, 
Chef cVescadre, which is some thing in the naval line equal 
to what Major Generals are in the British service. 

The army is commanded by M. le Comte de Rocham- 
beau, Lieutenant General, by four Marechaux de Camp, 
equal to our Major Generals. I don't know if they have 
Brigadiers, but those are not called by the name of 
Generals. It is compos'd of four French regiments, two 
Germans, and the legion of Lauzun ; they are com- 
manded by one Colonel-Commandant, one Colonel-en- 
Second, one Lieutenant Colonel, and one Major. They 
consist on the war establishment of 1,450 men each regi- 
ment, divided in two battallions ; the number of the 
legion I do not know. There is also a corps of artillery. 
The Colonels Commandants and Second Colonels will 
expect particular attentions from you ; the French offi- 
cers are compos'd of the first gentlemen of the nation. 
You know in what high station is in France the military 
profession and how far superior to the other kinds of life. 
These last hints I have dropp'd, my dear friend, to show 
you that we, from the prejudices of our allies, are more 
bound to attend to the dignity of the American army. 
Nothing will more surprise them than the denominations 
of colonels, majors, etc., for people that are nothing in 
the militia nor the military line, unless it is put on the 
account of the militia establishment. Accostum'd as they 
are to regiments of 1,450 men, we must not tell them 
the force of ours till they are reinforced, and mention 
only that they are upon the same footing as the British 



68 , THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

regiments, but lessened by the kill'd and wounded of 
past campaigns. For what relates to the strength of the 
army, I think it better not to mention any precise num- 
ber, as we are going to be reinforced by drafts from the 
several States. 

As cloathing is coming for the soldiers from France, as 
we must hope the States will give some to theyr officers, 
I should not wish them to know that we are so ragg'd as 
we find ourselves, but, however, not to raise too much 
theyr expectations on this subject. I do not believe 
there are continental troops in theyr way, but suppose it 
was the case, we must show but such of them as are 
decently cloathed, and make a good appearance ; for the 
militia the French don't expect any thing like dress and 
uniformity among them. 

When we talk to them of our troops I would not like 
any thing of vanity and self praise. But I confess I hate 
apologies, and the soldiers of America, the opposers to all 
the efforts of Great Britain, the conquerors of the British 
and Hessian troops which are rank'd among the best of 
Europe, do not, I think, want so much to apologize. 

His Excellency has made a regulation of uniforms, 
which we ought not to speak of as a novelty in our army. 
The Majors Generals are to wear a blue coat with buff 
facings, and two stars upon each shoulder ; the Brigadier 
Generals the same, but one star ; the field officers two 
epaulettes without star ; the company officers one epau- 
lette, and the captain to wear his on the right shoulder; 
the staff, except such as have military rank in the army, 
not to wear any uniform, but to have a cokade, and a 
sword. All commissioned officers to wear a black cokade, 
a sword, and an epaulette as much as our circumstances 
admit of it. The aids de camp to have the uniform of 
theyr lines, the epaulette of theyr rank, and a green 
feather ; the aids de camp of the Commander in Chief to 
wear a green and ivhite feather. I think, my dear friend, 



1780.] MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 69 

that you, your aids, and such officers as may be in the 
way should conform to the said regulations, and I beg 
leave to send you my epaulettes with the two stars of 
major general ordered by his Excellency. 

As a balance of ranks between the American and 
French officers has been proposed by the king of France, 
the honors paid to you in consequence of that balance 
which, I think, is a just one, shall be those of Marechal 
de Camp. General Washington is to receive the first 
that are paid to any man, except crowned heads, those of 
Marechal de France. 

In the French service they give to the Marechal de 
Camp thirteen guns, to the Lieutenant General fifteen, 
which ought to be the quota paid to Count de Rocham- 
beau. The honors paid by the French troops are 
different from those paid by the Americans ; but I think 
it the best that each service salute according to its own 
regulations till it is settled at head quarters. The French 
salute the Lieutenant General with shouldered arms, the 
drums beating a march, the Marechal de Camp with 
shouldered arms, the drum being silent, the Brigadier 
with ordered arms. 

Inclosed I have the honor to send you a letter of 
introduction to M. le Cte. de Rochambeau and M. le 
Chevalier de Ternay. 

In case by chance any troops or guards were to be 
seen by any French officer, they should be repeatly 
apprised beforehand of what any officer, private, sentry, 
or corps whatsoever is to do in every case that may 
occur before foreigners. 

The French officers should be acquainted with our 
three distinctions of Militia, State, and Continental offi- 
cers and men. 

M. de Corny, a gentleman in the French service, with 
the title of Commissaire des Gnerres, whom you have seen 
in Boston, will go to Providence for providing to the 



70 TIIE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

several wants of the French army. I beg leave to rec- 
ommend him to you as a gentleman of sense and merit 
whose acquaintance will, I dare say, prouve agreable 
to you. 

The ennemy under Knypausen are at Elisabethtown 
Point, and we in this place looking at each other, and 
not knowing yet what will take place, but, I dare say, 
you will have an exact account of every thing that may 
happen. 

I beg your pardon, my dear Sir, for the scribling of 
this letter, but we are not in a settled situation, and I 
write you as fast as I can with bad pens and bad ink 
upon the corner of a bad table. 

My letter will perhaps appear to you in some respects 
trifling, but from the knowledge I have of European 
prejudices, and particularly of the French nation, I do 
assure you that those articles are important to the con- 
sequence of our army during a co-operation. Nay it may 
extend itself farther. I beg most earnestly you will 
keep this confidential letter from any body whatsoever. 
I want, I confess, to support what I have already boasted 
off in France in my capacity of an American soldier. In 
the fighting way they shall see that we are equal to any 
thing ; but for what concerns dress, appearance, &c, we 
must cheat a little. 

Adieu, yours, Lafayette. 

Major General Heath, &c. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, June 12 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — lam just honored with yours of 
the 2 nd instant. I shall proceed to Providence with all 
possible dispatch, and hope soon to have the pleasure 
of welcoming the expected officers of our illustrious ally, 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 71 

but it will be attended with an unavoidable expense 
which scarcly any officer in these distracted times can 
bear, unless he be assisted by the public. Without, it 
I am sure that I cannot discharge the command with 
honor, either to myself or country. I have once had a 
specimen when his Most Christian Majesty's squadron 
under the command of the Count D'Estaing were in the 
harbour of Boston. I must therefore request your Ex- 
cellency's orders for such assistance as may appear to 
be necessary, or if you should decline a step of this kind 
that you would be pleased to represent it to those who 
have an undoubted right to do it. Your Excellency's 
knowledge of. the present times, state of the currency, 
and situation of the officers of the American army, 
renders it unnecessary for me to say more on this head. 

A part of my necessary baggage was left at the High- 
lands. Will you obligingly advise whether it will be 
best to let it rest there, or have it sent to some other 
place ? This will no doubt be governed by your Excel- 
lency's designs respecting my future destination. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Providence, June 20 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I arrived at this place the last week, 
am waiting to execute your Excellence's orders in the 
manner directed when the forces of our illustrious ally 
arrive. No intelligence of their near approach has yet 
been received here. 



* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 160, 161. — Eds. 



72 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

Doc r Craik is assiduously attending to the objects of 
your orders to him. The General Assembly have as- 
signed a place called Paupasquash, a point of land about 
fifteen miles below this place, for the purpose of accom- 
modating the sick ; the air at that place is fine and 
salubrious, but I think it may not be altogether a place 
of safety from the annoyance of the enemy's shipping, 
especially should the fleet of our allies be too far distant 
to afford protection. I have written Governor Greene 
on the subject of hospitals and the markets. I was on 
the 18 th honored with an answer to one of my letters, 
in which he observes, — " Yours of this date I have 
received and laid before the Assembly. They request 
me to assure you that they are fully impressed with 
the importance of the matters referred to, and I cannot 
but hope with the Assembly that by the spirited exer- 
tions of the quarter master aided by their committee," 
(one being appointed for that purpose) " suitable and 
ample provisions will be made for the safety and comfort 
of the sick and distressed of our allies." 

I find many public stores at this place and in a very 
insecure situation. A large quantity of ammunition is 
lodged in a wooden school house, .and within a few 
yards of several wooden dwelling houses on differant 
sides, which in case of fire will communicate the flames; 
another large magazine is on the hill east of the town. 
Both of these are without guards in the day time, a 
town watch is said to mount in the night for their 
security. There is also a number of brass and iron 
cannon, some brass mortars, and a large number of 
shott, & c , in several places. An emmissary of the enemy 
might easily spike the cannon with impunity. Major 
Perkins is here to take care of them and altho attentive 
to his duty, being without a single man to assist him 
except a conductor or two, he is prevented doing what 
is necessary even in shifting and airing the ammunition. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 73 

Colonel Greene's reg* of blacks, which is very small, 
are all employed at North Kingston makeing fascines, 
as I am informed, by your Excellency's express orders, 
and there is not in this town even a Serjeant's guard 
or one sentinel planted in the day time. Your orders 
direct my attention to another object, yet I cannot but 
mention these several matters in which the public interest 
is much concerned. 

Doubts having arrisen in the minds of Colonel Greene 
and the commissary of issues here, what officers are 
meant to be excluded from pay and rations by the 
resolve of Congress, of which the enclosed is coppy, I 
request your Excellency's opinion on it, as I must confess 
the resolve to me appears so indiffinite that I cannot 
fully determine what officers the resolve extends to. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 

Providence, June 20 th , 1780. 

My dear Marquiss, — The last evening I was honored 
with yours of the 11 th instant. As the post is just going 
off I have only time to acknowledge the receipt of it, 
and thank you for the hints you have given me, which 
I shall endeavour to observe. Love and duty to my 
country led me to take an active part in her cause, 
gratitude to her generous allies will lead me to pay 
every attention and civility in my power to those who 
may come to our aid ; but, my dear friend, in the infancy 
of the armies of my country and her comparitive inability 
it is not to be expected that our officers can vie in 
dress with the nobility of one of the most affluant nations 



74 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

in the world. Ours will be an age of hardship, difficulty, 
and danger. Posterity, I hope, will reap the harvest of 
our labors in ease and affluance. If a new regulation 
of uniforms is to take place, I wish it had been sooner 
known ; it will now be with some difficulty that I can 
conform to it. I, however, sincerely thank you for sending 
the epauletts. Please also to accept my thanks for the 
letters of recommendation to Monsieur le Chevalier de 
Ternay and Monsieur le Comte de Roehambeau. 
I am, my dear Marquiss, yours sincerely. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I have just had the pleasure of takeing my good 
friend Cap* La Touch by the hand. His wound is in 
a fair way. W. H. 

Marquiss de la Fayette. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Providence, June 21 st , 1780. 

Dear General, — The General Assembly of this State 
have passed a resolve to raise the number of men re- 
quired to compleat their battalions, and have, I am 
informed, directed that they be sent to me to be mus- 
terd and ordered to their destinations. I shall imme- 
diately order two or three officers from Col Greene's 
reg* with some Serjeants to receive them here, and put 
them to the drill. It is probable that they will be some 
time collecting. As the first attempt is to inlist them 
if possible by the first of July next, I request your 
Excellency's direction how they are to be forwarded to 
the army, and what proportion of them. I do not know 
that there is one officer here belonging to the regiments 
with the army to receive and march the recruits on. 

This morning a number of officers belonging to the 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 75 

continental frigates taken by the enemy at Charlestown 
arrived here in a cartel. As they inform me that Major 
General Lincoln and Cap* Whipple are gone to Phil- 
adelphia, from whence they are going home, they will 
probably be at head quarters before this reaches you. 
General Clinton is said to have gone to some part of 
Virginia with a principle part of the British army. A 
principle part of their ships of war are supposed to 
have gone to New York. Lord Cornwallis had marched 
from Charlestown with about 2,000 men towards North 
Carolina. 

Cap* La Touch, of the frigate Hermione, has just now 
been here. He is very desireous that a Captain Peter 
Duville, a native of Canada and well acquainted with 
the sea coast to the eastward, who was a lieut. in the 
continental frigate Queen of France, and is now a prisoner 
on parole, may be exchanged as soon as possible, as Cap* 
La Touch wishes to have him on board his ship. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv 1 . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Providence, June 23 rd , 1780. 

Dear General, — Enclosed is paragraph of an act of 
the Hon ble the General Assembly of the State of Rhode 
Island passed at their last session. The motive for make- 
ing the disposition proposed is the much greater ease in 
obtaining the recruits if to be formed by themselves, as 
many are averse to be incorporated with the blacks. 
This disposition I do not think myself authorized to 
make without your Excellency's approbation and direc- 
tion. If your Excellency should approve of the measure, 



76 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

I beg leave to submit the sending such officers from 
Col Angel's regiment as your Excellency may judge 
necessary to march the men on. It will be necessary to 
retain the musick of Col Greene's reg*. I beg your 
Excellency's answer to this as soon as may be convenient. 
1 have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient ser\ rt . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 

P. S. General Glover has just come to town on his 
way to the army. He left Boston on Wednesday last. 
The day before (Tuesday) it was reported in Boston that 
a cartel from Hallifax had arrived at Portsmouth, New 
Hampshire ; by some of the people it was said that a 
fleet was off Hallifax supposed to be French, that the 
inhabitants were much alarmed, and that a cutter had 
been dispatched to New York with the news. This may 
be without foundation. W. H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THE RECRUITING COMMITTEE 
AT ROXBURY. 

Providence, June 27 th , 1780. 

Gentlemen, — I am just informed that a tax on 
my estate for the purpose of hiering men for the town 
of Roxbury to serve in the continental army has been 
presented to my family. This renders it necessary for 
me to trouble you with the following. The Hon ble the 
General Assembly of the State of Massachusetts Bay 
in their resolutions of the 30 th of Sep fc last for the en- 
couragement of the army, among other things, resolved 
that, " The polls shall be exempted from taxes of every 
kind, and the estates both real and personal of each 
officer and soldier who shall engage as aforesaid (for 
the war) shall be exempted during their continuance 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 77 

in the service from all town taxes levied for the purpose 
of procuring men to go into the army." This is copied 
verbatum from the resolve which was sent me and is 
now before me, if it is not satisfactory the original may 
be found in the records of the State. None have paid 
their taxes for the support of the war with more cheer- 
fullness, or in better season, than my family have done. 
The bleeding cause of my country early called me to the 
field and still holds me there, deprived of every domes- 
tick enjoyment which are as dear to me as to any one 
living. If accompanied by my fellow countrymen, to 
whom our country calls as loudly as to me, there would 
be no occasion for such frequent and expensive drafts, 
but if any, regardless of their country's calls, will remain 
at home in the bosom of their friends pursuing their own 
interest, altho I do not say they have no right to do so, I 
say they have no right in law, in equity, or in reason to 
tax my estate for their neglects and deficiencies. My 
children are minors, consequently can be considered in no 
other light than as single polls without estate. As such 
they will cheerfully contribute their proportion in com- 
mon with their neighbours, but nothing on account of 
my estate. I am determined to fight for my estate, 
liberty, and country in person, not by proxey ; such as 
prefer doing of it by substitutes ought themselves to find 
them, without expence to me or mine. 

I flatter myself the foregoing will be fully satisfactory 
to you, and that you will do that justice to me, my 
family and estate, which my absence for the present 
leaves to your decision. 

I am with great regard, Gentlemen, your obedient 
servant. 

W. Heath. 

Committee for procuring men for the Army in behalf of the First Militia 
Company in Roxbury. 



THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



GEORGE WASHINGTON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Head Quarters, Ramapaugh, 29 th June, 1780. 

Dear Sir, — I have received your several favors of 
the 12 th , 21 st , 23 d , and 25 th instants. I think it but 
reasonable that the extra expences incurred by your 
present command should be defrayed by the public, and 
I will upon your being releived furnish you with a war- 
rant upon the military chest for the amount. You will 
draw from the commissary whatever it is in his power 
to provide. 

Your baggage which is at the Highlands may as 
well remain there, as it is more than probable that you 
will come on yourself to that quarter as soon as you 
have put matters in proper train for the reception and 
accommodation of our allies, who may be now daily 
expected. 

I shall take the earliest occasion of endeavouring to 
effect the exchange of Cap 11 Duville. I have had so 
little to do with marine prisoners that I cannot say 
whether we have an officer of equal rank in our 
possession. 

Were the clause in the act of Rhode Island to which 
you refer carried into execution it would make a very 
great inequality in the strength of the two regiments, 
more especially as Colonel Angell's suffered the loss of 
upward of forty in killed, wounded, and missing by their 
gallant behaviour on the 23 d instant at Springfield. In- 
stead, therefore, of the mode proposed by the Assembly, 
I think it best to march Colonel Greene's regiment and 
the levies when collected to the army and upon their 
arrival here so arrange and model them as to level the 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 79 

regiments. The objection to joining Greene's may be 
removed by dividing the blacks in such a manner be- 
tween the two as to abolish the name and appearance 
of a black corps. Under these circumstances I would 
not have Col Greene's reg fc to move this way untill the 
greater part of the levies have come in. They may then 
march together, and some officers may be left to collect 
and bring on what remain. They may in the mean time 
be employed in training and cutting fascines. 

I am exceedingly pleased to hear that the Council have 
given up the college to Doct r Craik, who would have 
been otherwise much distressed for convenient hospitals. 

I am, with great esteem, dear Sir, 

Your most ob* serv\ 

Maj r Gen 1 Heath. [Jfo signature.'] 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Providence, June 30 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I am this moment honored with 
yours of the 20 th instant. General Glover left this place 
three days since on his way to the Highlands. I have 
ordered an express to follow him immediately with a 
letter ; it is probable the express will not overtake him 
untill he arrives at the Highlands. I have given General 
Glover all the information your letter to me would afford, 
and have desired him to repair with all possible expedi- 
tion to Springfield. I have written to the post master 
at Boston to forward your letter from Boston to Gen 1 
Glover at Springfield, and have advertised the recruiting 
officers in Massachusetts to repair to Springfield. As it 
may be some time before your letter of instructions may 
come to Gen 1 Glover's hand, permit me to submit to 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 160, 161. — Eds. 



80 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

your Excellency the sending a duplicate of that letter, 
addressed to Gen 1 Glover at Springfield. 

By a gentleman who arrived here this day from Boston 
we learn that a vessel arrived a day or two since at that 
place in about 8 weeks' passage from France, the master 
of which reports that three days before he left France 
a fleet of 12 sail of the line, with 10,000 land forces, 
saild for America, and that sixty sail of the line were 
to sail in a few days, their destination unknown. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Cap* La Touch in the Hermione saild this morning 
from Newport harbour, I suppose on a short cruize. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Providence, July 2 nd , 1780. 
7 o'clock, p. m. 

Dear General, — A few minutes since John Williams, 
Esq r 2 formerly of Boston arrived here in 35 days' passage 
from L'Orient in France. He informs me that Count Du 
Chaffault saild from France the 2 nd of May with seven sail 
of the line, 5 frigates, and about 100 sail of transports, 
having 10,000 troops on board. The fleet has provisions 
for nine months for the whole of the troops and two 
millions of crowns in specie ; by what M r Williams could 
learn in France, if the fleet fell to the northward they 
were to proceed to Hallifax, a favorite object with our 
allies, if to the southward to Rhode Island. Our allies 
are in the highest spirits and M r Williams thinks will 
handle the British severely this summer ; that there was 
no talk of a British fleet following that of our allies. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 81 

The schooner in which M r Williams came is about 90 
tons burthen, is laden with salt, brandy, and dry goods. 
The continental frigate Alliance was in France when M r 
Williams left it, and not likely to sail soon. 

This afternoon Cap* Hopkins arrived here in 14 days 
from S* Martins. About nine days agoe in latitude 31, 
long. 66, saw six sail of large ships standing S. S. E. by, 
the wind. Cap* Hopkins is of opinion these ships were 
bound from Chaarlstown to the West Indies. Before 
Cap* Hopkins saild it was reported and believed that 
about the 8 th ulto. twelve Spanish ships of the line and 
five frigates, and four French ships of the line, with 
12,000 Spanish troops, arrived at Gaudaloup. It was also 
reported that some vessels which had arrived at S* Eus- 
tatia had fallen in with the fleet under Count Du Chaf- 
fault consisting of 13 sail of the line ; the grand French 
fleet in the West Indies was at Martinico. 

The packet for Congress herewith transmitted was 
brought by M r Williams. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Providence, July 11 th , 17S0. 

Dear General, — I was a few days since honord with 
a letter dated Head Quarters, Ramapaugh, 29 th June, 
1780, which from its contents I apprehend to be from 
your Excellency, altho the letter is without signature. I 
thank your Excellency for the assurances of support in 
the expences of my command here, and shall pay due 

* Washington's answer to this and the following letter is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., 
vol. iv. p. 161. — Eds. 

6 



82 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

attention to your injunctions respecting Col Greene's 
reg* and the recruits. 

Every thing seems now to be in a fair way for the 
reception and accommodation of the fleet and army of 
our illustrious ally. Monsieur De Corny appears to be 
much pleased. 

Your Excellency's ordering me from Boston to this 
place prevented my pursuing those further measures 
which I intended for ascertaining the precise situation 
of the enemy at Hallifax, especially the sending a person 
there for that purpose, which I was looking out for. 
On my leaving Boston I requested the Hon ble M r Bowdoin 
to make all further enquiry in his power, as he would 
have the best oppertunity, my removal preventing my 
doing of it. I think it necessary to mention this to your 
Excellency that you may know how the matter stands 
as far as I have knowledge of it. I have a list of a 
number of good pilots for the eastern coast should they 
be wanted. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Genl. Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Providence, July 11 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — A little before one o'clock this 
morning an express arrived here from Newport with 
advice that yesterday afternoon the long expected fleet 
of our illustrious ally appeared off that place, that the 
signals were all made and the fleet standing in to the 
harbor when he was sent off. I thought it my duty 
to give your Excellency this instant notice ; as soon 



1780.] PROCLAMATION. 83 

as a particular account can be obtained it shall be 
transmitted. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



PROCLAMATION. 

His Most Christian Majesty, the great and good ally of 
these States, having sent an army and fleet to their aid 
who are now in this town and harbour, the principals of 
friendship, of justice, and generosity call upon the good 
people of this town and vicinity to exert themselves in 
rendering the situation of the army and navy as comfort- 
able and agreable as circumstances will admit ; to facili- 
tate this it is to be hoped the inhabitants will bring to 
the market of Newport all kinds of meats, poultry, milk, 
vegetables, & c , for which they will receive a generous 
price. At the same time it is expected that no person or 
persons will be so ungenerous to their friends and allies, 
as well as regardless of the reputation of these States, as 
to enhance the prices of any of the necessaries of life 
above the current prices at which the respective articles 
were sold before the arrival of the fleet and army. If 
there should be found any who are so lost to the princi- 
pals of gen[er]osity, and friendship as to enhance the 
prices the committee for regulating the market are de- 
sired to report their names to the General immediately, 
that they may be duly noticed. 

Given at Newport this 13 th day of July, 1780. 

W. Heath, M. G. 

Board, lod[g]ing, liquores, & c , are ment to be included 
in the foregoing. 

By the Major Gen 18 Command. 



84 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 

Newport, July 15 th , 1780. 

My dear Marquiss, — Since I had the pleasure of 
writing you last the long wished for fleet and army 
of our illustrious ally have arrived here. You know I 
was alwaies fond of your countrymen, but I was never 
more so than since the late arrival. Yesterday Monsieur 
le Comte de Rochambeau, and his suit and the Marshals 
de Camps dined with me, and this day the officers borne 
on the enclosed list. They all join in compliments to you. 
The troops make a fine appearance, and are said to be 
equal to any in the French army. The Duke de Lauzun 
has a fine legion, about six hundred strong. When our 
whole force is collected we shall have a formadable army. 
I wish a few thousand more troops had been sent out. It 
is, however, said that another division is to follow. I 
hope soon to have the pleasure of takeing you by the 
hand • in the interim I am, my dear Marquiss, 
Affectionately yours. 

W. Heath. 

Marquiss de la Fayettee. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, July 16 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — Nothing of any considerable conse- 
quence has happened since I had the honor last to write 
you. The French troops are landed and encamped in a 
fine situation to the southeast of the town, and extend 
nearly across the island. The troops make a good appear- 
ance. The legion under the command of the Duke de 
Lauzun (the officer who took Senegall the last year) is as 
fine a corps as ever I saw. It is about 600 strong. The 



1780.] JABEZ BOWEN. 85 

officers express the highest satisfaction of the treatment 
they meet with. The markets are become very good. 
Great regularity is preserved. In short, in every respect, 
I may say, hitherto every thing appears agreable and 
satisfactory. 

I have this moment received a letter from a gentleman 
in Boston, advising that a vessell is just sent into that 
port which was one of a fleet of 36 sail from Ireland for 
New York. I have given information of it to the General 
and Admiral, and apprehend some of the fleet will go out 
on a cruize. The Hermione has been cruizing for this 
three or four days. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



JABEZ BOWEN* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Providence, July 19, 1780. 

Dear General, — You must excuse me for not calling 
on you again to take my leave. I heard my family was 
unwell. 

Several of our people have returnd from New York. 
They left it Tuesday week, and inform that the enemy 
could not muster more than five thousand effective men 
before S r Henry Clinton arrived ; that he bro't four thou- 
sand five hundred in the fleet, — of these three thou- 
sand effective. That their is 12 saile of men of war 
in the harbour, of different sizes as p r the incloased list ; 
that they discoverd the French fleet steering from the 
western shoar for Newport, and. reported 8 ships of the 
line and 40 transports. That it made a great stirr 

* For a notice of Deputy-Governor Bowen, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. 259 n. — Eds. 



86 THE HEATH PAPERS. [17* 

among them ; great industry used in reparing their forti- 
fications, especially on Long Island. Their was no heavy 
cannon in them at that time. This seems to be the best 
account of the state of the enemy. From the reports of 
prisoners, in a few days, I suppose, you will have better 
information. 

I wish you to call loudly on our General Assembly to 
furnish their quota of men without loss of time. If some- 
body dont stir them up, they will all get asleep again. 
The town of Swansey have not got a single man. I 
think you would do well to enquire into the reason of it. 
Many of their principal Tory inhabitants have been put 
under bonds by Gen ls Sullivan and Gates, but are now 
acting a most vile part. Your Councill ought to be fully 
inform'd of the whole affair. 

I give you joy on the arrival of the missing transport. 
Should advise their coming across by land to this or to 
Taunton. 

Our pastures and gardens are all burnt up with the 
great drought; and the Indian corn will soon faile if 
rain is not sent to water the earth, which I pray God 
to send. 

You will please to present my most respectfull compli- 
ments to Monsieur Raushambau and the Admiral. Tell 
them it will afford me much pleasure to waite on them at 
Providence, and that my best services in every thing is 
at their command. 

Wish you to let us know when the troops will be re- 
viewed ; perhaps we may pay you a visit, with some of 
the ladies in the train. If you have any news at any 
time, would thank you for a line. 

I am, dear Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humb. servant. 

Jabez Bowen. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 87 

WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, July 21 st , 1780. 

Dear General, — Yesterday I was honored with yours 
of the 15 th instant, and this day with that of the 5 th . I 
some time since posted a guard from Col° Greene's reg t 
over the military stores at Providence, which I think it 
will be necessary to continue untill the stores are re- 
moved. The boats have been collected and repaired. 
They are now at the west end of the island, and at hand 
to convey troops, either on to or off the island. I shall 
make immediate enquiry respecting the plank, and give 
instructions conformable to your directions. Attention 
has been paid to the repairs of the wharves at the ferries, 
which are now nearly com pleated. 

I have ordered Col Greene's reg* and the levies to 
march for the main army in manner as directed by your 
Excellency's letter of the 29 th ult°. The levies are not 
all raised. I have directed two commission officers to 
remain to receive and forward them. 

The day before yesterday four ships, two of which 
appeared to be of the line, came and looked into this 
harbour, at perhaps the distance of five or six leagues. 
The wind blowing fresh into the harbour prevented any 
part of Monsieur Chevalier de Ternay's squadron giting 
out. I viewed the enemy's ships for some time. Early 
this morning three frigates of the squadron put to sea. 
We can discover them from the hights and a ship about 
five leagues to the east of them, but whether the ship be 
a friend or foe is yet unknown. At the request of his 
Excellency General Rochambeau I have ordered about 
twenty peices of cannon, 24 and 18 p drs , to be brought to 
this place from Providence, & c , which he is going to 
mount at the entrance of the harbour on this and Con- 
nanicut Island, with some mortars, & c . Several prisoners 



88 TIIE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

have lately come from New York ; by them we learn 
that the enclosed list containd the naval force of the 
enemy at New York on the 11 th inst. It is reported that 
Admiral Graves arrived at Sandy Hook about? the 13 th in- 
stant, with five or six sail of the line. If this be true it 
is possible that the English have rather the superiority 
in ships in these seas. The missing transport from the 
French fleet with about 340 soldiers on board which 
parted from the fleet on this coast is arrived at Boston. 
The men will march by land to Providence. I have 
requested the assistance of the Hon. Council and directed 
that of the D. Q. M. G. and commissary to hasten them. 
The regularity, peace, good order, and discipline which 
prevails here gives great satisfaction to all orders of 
people. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON*. 

Newport, July 21 st , 1780, 10 o'clock p. m. 

Dear General,- — This afternoon fifteen or sixteen 
British ships of war have made their appearance off this 
harbour to the eastward of Block Island ; more than half 
of them, I think, are ships of the line. From appearances 
at sunset they intended to come too under Block Island. 
Admiral Greaves has probably joined Admiral Arbuthnot, 
and their design is to block up the fleet of Monsieur 
Chevalier de Ternay, and if possible intercept the expected 
second division of the French fleet. I thought it my 
duty to give immediate notice to your Excellency, and I 
beg leave to submit the expediency of some small cruizers 
being immediately sent from the Deleware to cruize for the 



1780.] MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 89 

French fleet and direct them to a place of safety. I have 
taken the liberty to write to the Council and Navy Board 
at Boston, and proposed the same in case the fleet should 
take the eastern coast. I mentioned this to his Excel- 
lency General Bochambeau, who was so much pleased 
with it that he requested I would write, for that he should 
leave it wholly with me. 

This night is spent in mounting a number of guns at 
advantageous posts at the entrance of the harbour, to 
make a cross fire with the ships, &c. There are here with 
the army a number of good engineers and an exceeding 
fine corps of artillery, with a numerous train of field artil- 
lery and some battering cannon. 

I had ordered Col Greene's reg fc to march immediately 
for the main army, but under present appearances think 
it best to detain them a few days ; have ordered them to 
take post on Butt's Hill, the north end of the island, to 
secure the communication. This has given much satis- 
faction to General Rochambeau, and I hope will meet 
with your Excellency's approbation. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Newport, July the 28, at the Count's quarters. 

My dear Friend, — Agreable to what had been settl'd 
betwen you and me, I spoke to the French General on 
the affair of the militia and hasten to send you his answer. 

The several accounts receiv'd from so many quarters 
pointed out the necessity of providing for self defense, — 
it is true that for the present we have not receiv'd any 
contradictory intelligence. But the preparations his 






90 4 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

troops have made, the design they have shown of defend- 
ing this to the last extremity, and above all the spirited 
exertions of the State of Mashachushets and Rhode Island 
have perhaps defeated the ennemy's offensive projects or 
made it necessary for them to come with such an appa- 
ratus as will take a longer time. 

All that the Count thinks about it is an affair of mere 
guess, as no contradictory accounts have come to hand. 
But he is so anxious not to give an unnecessary trouble 
to the people, he so warmly feel for theyr actual circum- 
stances, and is so reluctant to theyr being call'd from 
theyr harvest, unless there is the most absolute necessity, 
that he wishes every one of the militia which had been 
call'd for, exclusive of those intended for the campaign, 
may be immediately countermanded. In case the coming 
of the ennemy would point out the necessity of sending 
for them in some other instance, he will then lay his 
request before the State, but for the present begs the 
extraordinary militia may be dismiss'd. 

As to the three month militia which were to join Gen- 
eral Washington's army from the State of Mashachushet 
and Rhode Island, and also the regiment commanded by 
Col. Greene, the French General requests that they may 
be collected as was heretofore settl'd to the north end of 
the island, where they will make some works for the 
security of his communication with the continent. 

The Count de Rochambeau is happy to think that this 
new arrangement will not be in the least troublesome to 
the people, as the men ask'd for were immediately to 
join the grand army, where they will repair as soon as 
the works will be done, or the plans of the campaign and 
Gnl. Washington's directions will call them to the grand 
army. 

The French General begs you, my dear Sir, to lay all 
that before* the States, to tell them how gratefully he 
feels for theyr exertions in consequence of his requisition, 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH, 91 

and how afflicted be would be in any case to give tbem 
the least trouble which would not be necessary to the 
common advantage of self defense. With the aid of the 
three month militia that may come he assures the State 
that if the British army mean to attack him, he hopes he 
will give them such a reception as may give time to the 
State to collect theyr forces against the common ennemy. 
Adieu, my dear Sir. 

Yours. Lafayette. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, July 29 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — We remain nearly in the same sit- 
uation here as when I had the honor last to write you. 
The militia have been coming in, but few are yet col- 
lected. I was in hopes that they might have been stoped 
this morning, to which General Count de Rochambeau 
had just consented when I received a letter from Gov- 
ernor Trumbull of the 27 th , in which he observes, the 
following intelligence I have in a letter from Col Wells, 
dated at Greenwich the 25 th instant, viz*; "The enemy 
are all gone, except Delancy's from East and West 
Chester, and a very great embarkation takeing place, 
commonly believed they are going to the eastward. An 
officer of my regiment just arrived from below informs 
that the embarkation is almost universal from New York, 
Long Island, and Frog's Point, that General Clinton's 
baggage is all on board ship. If it was not for the trans- 
ports which have come through Hell Gate, I should think 
the West Indies was their object, but time must diter- 
mine their movements." In consequence of this intel- 
ligence Count de Rochambeau has desired that the 
militia may not be stoped or sent back untill further 
intelligence is received. 



92 THE HEATn PAPERS. [1780. 

As I am anxious to be with the army and resume my 
command, and as part of my baggage is now there, I re- 
quest by the return of the express your Excellency's 
pleasure whether I shall proceed immediately. The 
manner in which you are pleased to express yourself in 
your former letters leaves a doubt on my mind whether 
it was your intention untill further orders, and by the [ 
time the express returns matters will be brought to a j 
certainty here with respect to the intentions of the 
enemy. Indeed, it will be very disagreable to me to 
be here longer than is necessary without troops to 
command. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JAMES BOWDOLN* 

Newport, July 30 th , 1780. 

Sir, — His Excellency General Count de Rochambeau 
has just signified his pleasure that all the militia which 
have come in or are on their march to his aid (except those 
detached for three months) return to their homes to attend 
to their domestick affairs, which at this time peculiarly 
require their attention. This must be very agreable to 
the militia, and I assure you is exceedingly so to me. Gen- 
eral Count de Rochambeau expresses his highest pleasure 
and satisfaction of the spirit and zeal discovered both by 
the authority of the States to whom application has been 
made and by the militia, and rests assured that should 
occasion hereafter require it their aid will be imme- 
diately afforded. By intelligence received this morning 

* Letters of similar purport were written by General Heath to Governors Greene and 
Trumbull and to Generals Washington and Varnum. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 93 

the enemy's transports which were in the Sound had 
sailed to the westward, part of the troops at West 
Chester had marched for New York island, and that Cor? 
Simcoe with about 500 men had moved towards the east 
end of Long Island, probably to secure the stock. This 
day about noon the fleet that lay at anchor oh the east 
end of Block Island came to sail and stood out about 
S. West. Whether they are gone to sea or come to sail 
only on account of the wind which now blows at east, 
and rendered their station rather unsafe, is yet unknown. 
I have the honor to be, with great respect, Sir, 

Your most obed* serv*. 

Hon. James Bowdoin, Esq r . ^\T HEATH. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JAMES BOWDOIN.* 

Newport, July 31 st , 1780, 1 o'clock, p. m. 

Sir, — In consequence of letters this moment received 
from his Excellency General Washington, Governor 
Trumbull, & c , an attack on this place may be expected 
as soon as the wind is fair to bring forward the enemy's 
shipping which were last at Huntington Bay, said to be 
150 sail, with 8,000 troops on board. The militia are 
again called in, and I request that your commissaries 
may be again notified to send on provision without delay. 
General Washington has put the main army under march- 
ing orders to act as occasion may require. I have not 
time to add more than that 

I have the honor to be, Sir, your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

James Bowdoin, Esq r . 

* Letters of similar purport were written by General Heath to Governor Greene and 
various military officers for the immediate return of the militia and to commissaries for 
the forwarding of provisions. To Governor Trumbull he wrote: " I have not called for 
the return of any (in the first instance) from Connecticut, not knowing but the enemy 
may land at New London or elsewhere in your State, where the presence of all your 
militia may be necessary, but should the enemy pass you I request that your Excellency 
would give orders for the militia to march this way with all possible expedition." — Eds. 



94 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



GEORGE WASHINGTON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Robinson's House, 31 st July, 1780. 

Dear Sir, — I arrived here last night, having met your 
favors of the 25 h and 26 h at Paramus, where the army 
then lay. Immediately upon hearing that the transports 
with the troops which had been some days on board had 
sailed eastward, I put the army in motion again ; they 
will cross the ferry to-day and will be joined by the 
troops from hence. I propose moving as rapidly as pos- 
sible down towards Kingsbridge, which will either oblige 
the enemy to abandon their project against Rhode Island, 
or may afford us an opportunity of striking them to ad- 
vantage in this quarter, if Sir Henry Clinton has carried 
with him the number of men reported (eight thousand), 
and with less than which I think he would scarcely risque 
an attempt upon Count Rochambeau reinforced by the 
militia. 

I intirely approve of the measures you have taken for 
calling in aid, and I have the strongest hopes that if Sir 
Henry should venture upon an attack that he will meet 
with a reception very different from what he expects. 
You know the critical situation in which this army will 
be in a position below, and how much depends upon con- 
stant intelligence of the motions of the enemy. I shall 
direct relays of expresses the whole way between this 
army and you to convey intelligence in the most expedi- 
tious manner. The nearest express to you will be upon 
Tower Hill, and Gen 1 Greene advises that you should 
keep two whale boats to communicate with him by South 
Ferry so long as that passage shall be safe, and if that 
should be interrupted by Bissell's Harbour. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, y r most ob* ser\ 

G° Washington. 



\ 



1780.] WILLIAM GREENE. 95 

P. S. I wish the Count De Rochambeau had taken a 
position on the main. 

G° W nv 

Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM GREENE TO W T ILLIAM HEATH. 

Providence, 1 st August, 1780. 

Dear Sir, — The dismission of the militia was unfor- 
tunate. However, I hope we shall not be deficient in 
men. Immediately on the receipt of your letter of yes- 
terday orders were dispatched to all the brigadiers and 
commandants of regiments and independant companies 
in this State. The orders were repeated from a possi- 
bility of failure in the conveyance, and to accelerate 
their march, agreeable to your request. Messengers 
were sent to the officers of militia from the Massachusetts 
Bay and Connecticut who had been marching to your 
assistance, urging their immediate return. Expresses 
were sent to the President of the Massachusetts Council, 
Brigadier Gen 1 Godfrey, and the other principal officers 
of the militia in the adjacent towns and counties of that 
State, communicating the request of his Excellency 
Compte Rochambeau and entreating their immediate 
compliance. 

I am very fearful of the want of provisions. It will 
be exceedingly difficult for this State to supply its own 
militia. Its treasury is very much exhausted. Every 
expedient has been thought of. The Council of War 
have furnished the State's q r master with certificates 
payable out of the taxes which are ordered and not 
yet collected. I trust there will be no failure in that 
department. 

The furnishing of supplies, as I before observed, in the 
commissary department will be attended with difficulty. 
Every exertion in the power of the State will be made 



96 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

to supply its own militia, but no dependence can be 
made on supplies from this State for the troops from any 
other. I have wrote Governor Trumbull on this subject. 
A letter from you, Sir, to the same purport, both to 
Massachusetts Bay and Connecticut, will probably pre- 
vent the evils apprehended from the failure of the 
necessary provisions. 

I am, with due respect, Sir, your most obed* servant. 

W. Greece. 

Inclosed you have the examination of Benjamin Thur- 
ber, lately a prisoner with the enemy, and w 7 ho has made 
his escape. 

The Hon ble Maj r General Heath. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Howland's Ferry, Aug st 2 nd , 1780. 

Dear General, — I am this evening honored with 
yours of the 31 st ult°. I came here the last evening in 
order to arrange and make a distribution of the militia 
who are coming in from all quarters. It has been agreed 
that about three thousand militia shall act upon the 
island, about 1,500 near Quaker Hill. If Sir Henry 
Clinton should land south of the town the militia will 
support Gen 1 Rochambeau ; if he lands on the north of 
the French army he will be between two fires and the 
1,500 (the advance of the militia) will be supported by 
1,500 more, who will be posted on Butt's Hill, & c . The 
remainder of the militia are to be posted on the east side 
of the ferry in order to secure the communication which 
is considered as a capital object. I wish with your Excel- 
lency that General Rochambeau could have taken a posi- 









1780] MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 97 

tion on the main ; we shall, however, do the best we can 
under present circumstances. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* seiV. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. " ' -HEATH. 



MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Newport, August the 3 d , 1780. 

My dear Sir, — I have just receiv'd a letter from the 
General wherein he acquaints me of his motions towards 
New York, and in taking it for granted that you stay in 
the department tells me I may join my division in the 
grand army. You will easily believe, my dear friend, 
that upon Gnl Washington's letter I am in a great hurry 
to be with him, and indeed you know that I heartily 
wish'd for an order of going again to my command. I 
will therefore as soon as your answer will set me at 
liberty to do it repair to head quarters, and my horses 
are waiting at. the door for that or any other of your 
commands. My orders were only to lay our circum- 
stances before the French generals, know what they were 
equal to, and come back immediately, so that the General 
does not know if I am here still, and wants me to come 
as he with reason believes that I have done the business 
intrusted to my care. 

Count de Eochambeau will be with you between four 
and five this evening, and wishes to speak with you. As 
his Excellency does not give him any hope of a conti- 
nental succour, the Count thinks with reason that he 
must keep a greater proportion of militia within the 
lines. If you was to ask my opinion it would be this, — 
to have eight hundred men at the communication in the 
forts, to have two thousand more on the island at such 
places as we had settl'd yesterday, and those two thou- 



98 TIIE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

sand men to retire within the lines. As there is no 
probability of the succour coining before long from the 
grand army, I would as a friend advise you to take your 
quarters again on the island and (till the ennemy come) 
at Newport. Those two thousand to retire within the 
lines and eight hundred to secure the communication 
will be a command which I think you might take your- 
self, leaving Gnl Varnum on the continent, and for the 
moment of the ennemy's landing you might cross a force 
equal to repulse them. But in my absence I think (as 
a confidential friend of yours) that your presence will be 
wanted here. 

As to the spots which had been recconnoitred for post- 
ing the several bodies of militia Chevalier de Chattelux 
may give you as good an account of them (in case you 
had no time of riding there) as I might have done my- 
self. The French will send us some flour and tents. I 
beg, my dear Sir, you will send me immediately my leave 
of setting out ; without I can't stir as you are my superior 
officer. I am impatiently waiting. 

Yours forever. Lafayette. 

Count de Rochambeau is alwais determin'd to attak 
the ennemy on theyr landing. 

In case there were letters from General Washington or 
Colonel Hamilton for me, or letters from Colonel Girnat 
as they are merely confidential, and the General will not 
have them seen by any body, I beg you will give pre- 
vious orders that thej^ be not put in any body's hands 
and be sent back unseal'd. 



MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

August, the 3 d , at six o'clock. 

Dear Sir, — I had the honor of writing to you this 
morning and communicating to you the contents of Gnl 



1780.] 



WILLIAM HEATH. 



99 



Washington's letter, in consequence of which I am to 
join his army. I have spent the most part of the day 
in waiting for your answer. But as it did not yet come 
to hand cannot conceive how it may be so long detain'd. 
You are too much my friend not to know that if an 
attempt was made upon New York a delay of some hours 
might deprive me of the happiness to serve our noble 
cause and sharing a part of the common glory ; in conse- 
quence of which I hope you will excuse my not waiting 
any more. I am on board the Duke de Bourgoigne, 
where your letter was to reach me. Chevalier de Ternay 
wants to go out and is kept here by my presence. In 
a word, my dear Sir, I take upon myself to set out 
because I know from your friendship that you will have 
no objection to it, and because if I was to arrive too late 
I would for ever lament the time I lost since this morn- 
ing. In order to conciliate what I think is due to you, 
and what I owe to Gnl Washington's letter, I will ride 
day and night to regain the precious hours I have lost. 
Confiding on your goodness to excuse that step, and 
believing that both our friendship and the urging occasion 
will apologise for me, I am, my dear friend, 

Yours. Lafayette. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE. 

Howland's Ferry, Aug st 3 rd , 1780. 

My dear Marquiss, — I am just honored with yours 
of this date. I am exceedingly sorry to have you leave 
Rhode Island, as your knowledge of the genius and lan- 
guage of the French enables you to transact business with 
them with great ease, and may render your services more 
usefull here than elsewhere. To speak for myself I shall 
much regret your absence, but as you seem to have 
an inclination to return to your command in the army 



100 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780, 

I cannot object. I shall after dinner ride to Butt's Hill, 
where I shall probably meet Count de Rochambeau. The 
communication I still consider as the most important post, 
and if even the island should be lost it will be here, and 
that at any rate it should be secured on both sides the 
water. As you must, my dear Marquiss, be anxious to 
be on your journey as soon as possible I will not detain 
you by a long epistle, and pray you be assured that 
be your destination where it may, my best wishes for 
your health, honor, and happiness attend you. 
I am, with great regard, my dear Marquiss, 

Affectionately yours. 

W. Heath. 



WILLIAM GREENE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Providence, August 3, 1780. 

Sir, — The whole militia of this State are call'd forth, 
and the greater part of them will be this day at Bristol, 
the place of rendevous. I have with great pleasure ob- 
served the spirit manifested by them on the present 
occasion, when the backwardness of the farming business, 
the excessive drought, and the impossibility of procuring 
any labor done in there absence will subject them to 
great and unavoidable loss. In justice to them I must 
beg leave to observe that the continuing the whole of 
our inhabitants in the field any length of time at this 
very busy season will be attended with ruinous conse- 
quences to this State, and nothing but the most urgent 
necessity can justify it. I presume from the conduct of 
the States of Massachusetts Bay and Connecticut on 
similar occasions that they will chearfully furnish their 
quota of men and supplies, and that the necessary meas- 
ures have been taken for bringing the men into the field 
immediately. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 101 

I enclose you a copy of a letter from the Council of 
the Massachusetts Bay, from whence it appears that you 
are empower' d to call forth part of the militia of that 
State. I could wish to be informed whether from the 
requisitions already made that a part of the militia of 
our State may not be dismiss'd for the present consistant 
with the public safety. 

I am respectfully, Sir, your most obed* servant. 

W. Greene. 

Maj r General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, Aug st 5 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — Since I had the honor last to write 
your Excellency, I have been closely employed in form- 
ing the militia who have been coming to our aid into bri- 
gades and makeing other necessary arrangements. Two 
thousand men have been and still are advanced near this 
town, about 1,500 at Butt's Hill, and the remainder at 
Howland's and Bristol ferrys. Perhaps a greater spirit 
never was discovered than has been on the present oc- 
casion. The militia of this State and that of the county 
of Bristol in the State of Massachusetts, with six other 
regiments from that State, have come in. The extreme 
busy season, the scarcity of provisions, and probability 
that Sir Henry will not come this way, has induced Gen- 
eral Count de Rochambeau to consent that the militia 
return home except 3,500, in which number is to be in- 
cluded Col Greene's reg* and the three months' men 
from Massachusetts. Two thousand of these are to be 
posted between Quaker Hill and the town, Black Point, 
& c ; the remainder at Butt's Hill and Tomany Hill. 
The rest I shall discharge immediately. Nothing re- 
markable has transpired since I had the honor last to 
write. General Count Rochambeau has some intelligence 



102 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

from the Hon ble M r disking of Boston of a fleet having; 
been lately seen at sea, which he thinks may probably 
be the 2 nd division of the French. He will transmit the 
intelligence. I take the liberty to enclose a letter I have 
just received from Col Allan at Machias. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant, 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen' Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Howland's Ferry, Augs* 9 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — The day before yesterday I was 
honored with yours of the 3 rd instant, and immediately 
after consulting General Count de Eochambeau dis- 
charged all the militia who had come in on the alarm. 
The spirit and ardor discovered by the militia on this 
occasion, I think, will have a very powerfull effect on 
the minds both of our friends and enemies. 

General de Rochambeau detains Col 1 Greene's reg* and 
four regiments of three months' militia from Massachu- 
setts who were destined to Claverack and turned this 
way on the late alarm. The former agreable to your 
instructions are enjoyned to pay close attention to their 
discipline. I have called for a return, which shall be 
forwarded as soon as it comes to hand. The State of 
Rhode Island are raising: their reg;* of three months' 
men. I shall duly notice your injunctions respecting 
them. The Count has desired that the three months' 
men from Massachusetts may be employed in repairing 
and strengthning the works on Butt's Hill which he con- 
siders as the key of the communication with the main 
and a post that will afford security to his stores, baggage, 
& c , in his absence, should his army move to act offensively 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 103 

else where. The troops are accordingly employed on 
those works. This militia by your Excellency's orders 
were destined to Clave rack. I pray your instructions to 
what place they shall march when the Count is willing* 
that they leave this. Having sent home the militia, and 
made the other necessary arrangments in this quarter, 
I shall return to Newport. I wish to be with our own 
army, and I sincerely thank your Excellency for your 
assurance that my command is and will alwaies be ready 
for me. My inclination leads me immediately to repair 
to it, but the sentiments held up in your letter that I 
may stay longer here if necessary to the accommodation 
of our allies is taken fast hold on by the Count, who will 
not readily consent to my departure at present. Indeed, 
hitherto it is not possible that more harmony could subsist 
than has been enjoyed by all the officers on both sides ; 
every thing is in the greatest tranquility, nor can I wish 
for a better understanding than at present prevails. 

The Count has applied to me for a number of drivers 
for his artillery and ammunition waggons. I have fur- 
nished them from the three months' militia ; they receive 
their provisions and the additional pay of drivers from 
the Count, who is exceedingly pleased with them. In- 
deed, it would be impossible for the Frenchmen to drive 
the American horses without createing the greatest 
confusion and disorder especially in action. If your 
Excellency approves this, it is well ; if inadmissible they 
shall be ordered to join their corps. 

With every sentiment of respect, I have the honor 
to be 

Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Newport, Aug st 12 th . I returned here yesterday. 
The British fleet are gone to Gardner's Island, except the 
frigates who continue cruising off the harbour. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



104 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON * 

Newport, Aug st 17 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — The British fleet under the com- 
mand of Admiral Aburthnot which was lately at anchor 
in Gardner's Bay came to sail the day before yesterday, 
and yesterday we are informed were off New London. 
Some deserters lately from the fleet report that Sir 
Henry Clinton has yet designs against the French fleet 
and army here, and that he will soon make an attempt 
with 13,000 land forces. Little credit is given to this 
report. I believe Admiral Arbuthnot from the superiority 
of his fleet wishes to come this way and has been and 
still is urging of it, but that Sir Henry Clinton is very 
diffident about it. The State of Rhode Island have not 
raised their regiment of three months' militia. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. HEATn. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.! 

Newport, Aug st 31 st , 1780. 

Dear General, — By the master of a small vessell 
who left Martha's Vinyard yesterday morning I learn 
that Admiral Aburthnot is at that place with ninesail of 
the line, eight other ships of war of different rates, and 
two tenders; that he has made a demand of 11,000 lbs. 
of beef and mutton to be delivered every other day at 
5 d p r l b ; that the inhabitants had represented to him that 
they could not comply with the requisition without being 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 161, 162. — Eds. 
t Washington's answer to this letter and to the one immediately following is printed in 
5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 163. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 105 

very soon involved in great distress, on which the Admiral 
assured the inhabitants that he would not insist on the 
full quantity demanded, if they would deliver as much 
as their ability would allow ; that it was said Admiral 
Arbuthnot's takeing station near the Vinyard was to 
prevent a junction of the 2 nd division of the French fleet, 
which can be better effected from his present than his 
late station. This probably is his object, as the prevailing 
winds in the approaching season will be in favor of it. 

Enclosed is the report of two deserters from Long 
Island and the last intelligence I have received from 
that quarter. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, Sep f 3 rd , 1780. 

Dear General, — His Excellency General Count de 
Eochambeau has this morning consented to Colonel 
Greene's regiment joining the army. I shall therefore 
order them to march as soon as possible, which I ap- 
prehend will be some time the next week. The Count 
retains the three months' militia from Massachusetts for 
the purpose of completeing the works at Butt's Hill. 
This militia consists of parts of five regiments, as your 
Excellency will see by the returns which are made to 
the Adjutant Gen 1 of the army. The Count thinks the 
works might have been finished before this time and 
that the militia do not work with spirit. This, I suppose, 
in some degree is the case, altho every possible means 
has been taken to animate them. But after all the 
works are very extensive, and the digging entirely in 



106 THE IIEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

a rock, and the ditch cannot be sunk faster than the 
engineers and miners drill and blow the rocks. Under 
these circumstances, and in a work nearly as large as 
the fort at West Point, your Excellency cannot be at 
loss to conjecture what time will be necessary for its 
completion. For my own part I do not believe that it 
will be finished and friesed in less than six weeks, if so 
soon. The Count intimated to me this morning that the 
time of service of this militia was now so short that your 
Excellency would not probably wish to have them go 
on from this place. This your Excellency can best 
determine. 

The Count begins to think of winter quarters, and 
has applied to the Legislature of the State on the sub- 
ject ; they have appointed a committee to confer with 
him. Newport and Bristol are talked of for the purpose. 
I fear they will be stratened for fuel and forage, es- 
pecially the latter ; they have a prodigeous number of 
horses and the crops of hay have been but light, and the 
feed from the excessive dry season is very short. The 
Indian corn is also much effected by it, and the crops 
in general this way will be light. 

The British fleet left the Vinyard Sound on Wednesday 
or Thursday last, but where they are gone is yet un- 
known. Some deserters who made their escape from 
the fleet while at the Vinyard report that they expected 
a reinforcment from Newfoundland (this, however, we 
know must be very trifleing), and that they would make 
an attempt on the French at Newport; but as your army 
was become very strong it was doubted whether a suffi- 
cient number of troops could be spared from New York 
to give any prospect of success to such an enterprise. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 107 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, Sep' 19 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have just been favored with a 
sight of your letters to General Rochambeau and Admiral 
de Ternay, mentioning the arrival of a fleet at Sandy 
Hook, supposed to be a squadron under the command 
of Admiral Rodney, a few minutes before I received the 
enclosed from Colonel Ledyard at New London. General 
Rochambeau and Admiral de Ternay went yesterday 
morning to Providence, were not expected to return un- 
till to-morrow or next day. Baron Viominel, who is the 
senior officer of the French troops here, is very desireous 
to be precisely ascertained that Admiral Arbuthnot's fleet 
were at Gardner's Island the 13 th and 14 instant, which 
will fully determine whether the fleet which arrived at 
the Hook was Arbuthnot or Rodney. I have sent an 
officer to have the matter fully determined. Baron 
Viominel has also sent off an express to the General and 
Admiral at Providence. For my own part I am of 
opinion that the fleet which arrived at the Hook is part 
of Admiral Rodney's, from the West Indies. 

A very intelligent man just from New York informs 
me that the most active preparations are makeing there 
for the embarkation of a body of troops, that a number 
of vessels are fitting for their horses, that the comings 
are made very strong, and have the appearance of being 
designed for a voyage of some length, but the approach- 
ing rough season may be the motive for this ; that there 
were conjectures that the embarkation was destined for 
the West Indies, the southward, and by some that an 
attempt would be made here before winter, at least on 
the shipping. 



108 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

Enclosed is a certificate of the time of Lieu* Cook's 
resigning his commission. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JAMES BOWDOIN. 

Newport, Sep 4 22 nd , 1780. 

Sir, — Since I had the honor of addressing you yester- 
day I have received authentick intelligence from New 
York that Admiral Sir George Rodney arrived at Sandy 
Hook on the 13 th instant, with ten sail of the line and 
two frigates; that on the 15 th he detached Commodore 
Drake with four sail of the line to join Admiral Arbuth- 
not. These four ships formed a junction on the 18 th 
near Gardner's Island. The object of the junction is to 
intercept 12 sail of French men of war which the enemy 
suppose are coming here from the West Indies. The 
embarkation of a body of troops was ordered to take 
place immediately at New York, their destination 
variously conjectured. Some thought for Virginia ; 
others this place. I think they cannot spare a sufficient 
land force from New York to effect any thing of con- 
sequence here, but their great superiority in naval force 
at this time may lead them to attempt the distruction of 
the fleet in our harbour. The French General desired 
me this morning to notify the militia of the adjacent 
country to hold themselves in readiness to march to their 
assistance should it become necessary. I have written 
Governor Greene on the subject. The readiness of the 
militia to turn out on all occasions has been so con- 
spicuous that I have not given notice to any in your 
State, but if necessity require it shall call upon such to 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 109 

march as may be needfull. In takeing such a step I con- 
clude I shall have your approbation, as I shall call on 
such reg ts as have heretofore been pointed out by the 
Hon ble Council. Shall be carefull not to call sooner or 
more than may appear to be necessary. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, Sir, 

Your most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon. James Bowdoin, Esq r . 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newport, Sep* 25 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — A few days since, and during the 
absence of General Count de Rochambeau at Hartford, I 
received very particular intelligence from Major Talmadge 
that Admiral Rodney arrived at Sandy Hook on the 13 th 
instant with 10 sail of the line and two frigates, that on 
the 15 th Admiral Rodney detached Commodore Drake with 
4 sail of the line to reinforce Admiral Arbuthnot, (these 
four ships formed a junction on the 18 th near Gardner's 
Island). Their object is said to be to intercept 12 sail of 
French ships expected on this coast from the West Indies, 
and that orders were given for an embarkation of troops 
to take place immediately at New York. The whole of 
this intelligence was forwarded by Major Talmadge to 
head quarters, which your Excellency may have seen 
since your return, if not before. In consequence of the 
receipt of it here General Yiomenil proposed to me the 
calling back Col Greene's reg*, which had passed over to 
the main on their way to the main army. This I did, and 
the reg t returned accordingly. The French General also 
proposed the notifying the militia to hold themselves in 
readiness to come in on the shortest notice, but their 
readiness has been so conspicuous on every occasion that 



110 TIIE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

I thought this last measure unnecessary. I cannot yet 
think that the enemy will make an attempt on this place, 
altho their present great naval superiority may prompt 
them to attempt the obstruction of the French fleet. Since 
this last intelligence was received, the fleet has taken a 
new position, which with the support of three batteries 
of heavy metal, one on each flank and the other in the 
center, it is thought their situation is rendered safe 
against an attack from the fleet, altho so much superior, 
and that they cannot be destroyed, unless the enemy 
come with such a land force as to get possession of some 
posts on the island. Count Rochambeau returned here 
the last evening;. 

Admiral Arbuthnot's fleet remain near Gardner's Island. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed t serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO COMTE DE ROCHAMBEAU.* 

Providence, Oct r 10, 1780. 

Dear General, — I have not been able to settle 
matters so as to admit of my departure untill this morn- 
ing. I am now sitting out for head quarters. I cannot 
leave this State without testifying the gratitude, respect, 
and esteem I feel for your Excellency, and that friend- 
ship which nither length of time or distance of place 
can obliterate. I pray you, Sir, accept my warmest 
wishes for your health and happiness, that your command 
may be easy and honorable to yourself and advantageous 
to the allied nations in whose service you are engaged, 
from whom may you continue to receive the most honor- 
able approbations. 

* For a notice of Comte de Rochambeau, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iii. p. 177 n. — Eds. 



1780.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. Ill 

}'«! I have the honor to be, with every sentiment of re- 

I spect and esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Please present my respectfull regards to the 
officers of the army and navy of whom I shall retain a 
most affectionate rememberance. 

General Rochambeau. 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Pine's Bridge, Oct 10 th , 1780. 

Dear Gen l , — Since my return from head q rs , a few 
days since, I have been hon d with your agreeable fav r of 
the 21 st ult° with its enclosed from M r Broome, as also 
another of the 30 th ult°. I am much obliged to you for 
your kind attention in forwarding my letters to M r 
Broome, as well as his returns to me. 

Before this reaches you the information of Major Andre's 
execution must undoubtedly have been rec d . Thro' the 
course of his tryal and confinement (during which I had 
the charge of him a great part of the time) he behaved 
with that fortitude which did him great honor. He made 
every confession to the Court which was necessary to 
convict him of being a spy, but said nothing of his 
accomplices. During his confinement 1 became inti- 
mately acquainted with him ; and I must say (nor am I 
alone in the opinion) that he was one of the most accom- 

* Benjamin Tallmadge was born in Brookhaven, N. Y., Feb. 25, 1754, graduated at Yale 
College in 1773, and taught school at Wethersfield, Conn., down to the breaking out of the 
war. In June, 1776, he was made Adjutant of a Connecticut regiment, and served in 
various capacities down to the close of the war. He had personal charge of Andre - after 
his capture. After the war he engaged actively in business in Litchfield, Conn. ; and 
in 1801 he was elected a member of Congress, where he served until 1817, when he de- 
clined a re-election. He died at Litchfield March 7, 1835. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of 
American Biography, vol. vi. pp. 25, 26 ; [Dexter's Yale Biographies, third series, 
pp. 506-508. — Eds. 



112 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

plished young gentlemen I ever was acquainted with. 
Such ease and affability of manners, polite and genteel de- 
portment, added to an enlarged understanding, made him 
the idol of Gen 1 Clinton and the B. army. On the day 
of his execution he was most elegantly dressed in his 
full regimentals, and marched to the destined ground 
with as much ease and chearfulness of countenance as 
if he had been going to an assembly room. Tho' his 
fate was just, yet to see so promising a youth bro't to the 
gallows drew a tear from almost every spectator. He 
seemed, while with me, to be almost unmindful of his 
fate, and only regreted his disappointment. 

Since Arnold has been at N. Y. he has flung into the 
provost many of our friends whom he will have punished 
if possible. I fear it will injure the chains of our intelli- 
gence, at least for a little time 'till the present tumult is 
over. I am happy that he does not know even. a single 
link in my chain. His Excellency Gen 1 Washington has 
undoubtedly given j^ou the particulars of the whole 
hellish plot, which was laid to have nearly overthrown 
the liberties of this country. So providential, I had 
almost said miraculous, a detection of such deep laid 
villany can hardly be found in the history of any people. 

Joshua Smith, an accomplice with Arnold, was under 
tryal when I left h d q rs a few days since, and will doubt- 
less be punished capitally. 

Oct 11. 

I have this moment rec d information from my agents 
at N. Y., but no letters. The conduct of that infamous 
Arnold has been such since his arrival at N. Y. that our 
friends who were not even suspected are too much 
agitated at the present juncture to favor us with intelli- 
gence as usual. I hope in a little time the storm will 
blow over. 

I have two acc ts from N. Y., but neither thro' my old 
channel, one of which is that the enemy have embarked a 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 113 

considerable body of troops and were put to sea ; another 
that their embarkation goes on very slowly. 

The letter herewith sent, please to forward to M r 
Broome. With compliments to the gentlemen of your 
family, I am, d r Gen 1 , 

Most respectfully your obed t serv*. 

Benj a Tallmadge. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



COMTE DE ROCHAMBEAU TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Newport, Oct er 12 th , 1780. 

My dear General, — I have received the letter that 
you honoured me with from Providence. I am extremely 
sensible of the marks of friendship that you give me, and 
likewise very grateful for all that your good heart has 
dictated to you upon this occasion of our present separa- 
tion. I regret vastly your absence, my dear General, as 
well as all the army, and I shall never forget the zeal, 
the activity, and the intelligence with which you helped 
us in all our operations, and the French army will always 
be most grateful of it. I have the honor to be, with the 
most inviolable attachment, my dear General, 

Your most obedient and humble servant. 

LE C te DE ROCHAMBEAU. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Oct. 17 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — Yours of the 16 th ins* to Major 
General. Greene was handed to me. Colonel Van Scaik 
with his reg* arrived here a few hours since from Albany, 
which place he left yesterday. The Colonel informs me 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 164. —Eds. 



114 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

that the enemy after takeing and burning Fort George, 
Fort Ann, and about thirty houses and as many barns 
had gone back, but it was apprehended by the command- 
ing officer at Fort Edward that after they had secured 
their prisoners they would return. Col Gansvoort's reg* 
embarked yesterday for Albany, but the wind has pre- 
vented their sailing. I have with the advice of General 
Greene ordered the reg* commanded by Lt. Col Com- 
mand 1- Weissenfells to embarke, and as soon as the wind I 
is fair proceed to Albany, with the other reg*, to take 
Governor Clinton's orders, who had arrived at that place 
just before Col Van Scaik came away. I wish to know 
your Excellency's pleasure, whether one of those reg fc , 
should the enemy desist from further operations in that i 
quarter, be ordered to Fort Schuyler for the winter, or in 
what way the place of the present garrison, who have not 
long to serve, shall be supplied. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



JOHN PATERSON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Camp Totoway, 23 d Oct r , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have seen a letter from you to 
Gen 1 Glover, inclosing a very bulky one from M r Gushing, 
requesting your opinion of the best method for raising 
the troops for three years or during the war. 

It most certainly is absolutely necessary, but the foolish, 
childlike conduct we have for years pursued, if designed, 
could not have been better calculated to prevent it. 
Bounties before unheard of have been given to but 
little better purpose than to hire the populace to visit 
the army ; this instead of checking the growing avarice 
of the country (which ought to have been their object) 



1780.] JOHN PATERSON. 115 

has cherished it, till they pay their devotion to no other 
shrine but mammon's. This disposition they now find 
necessary to surmount, but the way to accomplish it they 
are undetermined in, the prodigy of their own begetting 
has become not only troublesome but frightful. 

It is impossible for me to know what will be best, 
unacquainted with the financies of the State and the 
disposition of the people, it must be only opinion founded 
in ignorance, but suppose it political to engage the men 
of sense, of learning and ability of every town in the 
plan. They must raise the spirit of the people, and if 
possible revive the enthusiasm of '75. These men must 
attend particularly to the concerns of the public ; they 
must co-operate with the Court. Experience has taught 
us that the populace have but few opinions of their own, 
that in every town these persons if they can be engaged to 
promote will accomplish any measure they please. They 
even ought to be bribed to do good ; when you have once 
gained them almost any method will be acceptable. 

If immediate exertions, and those that will suddenly 
answer the purpose, were not necessary, I should tell 
them the most certain method to raise the men would be 
to feed, clothe and pay those they now have in the field, 
that as long as they cheat them no person will inlist, and 
that the pay of a soldier must be as good or better than 
what he can obtain at home, but this will be a work of 
time. The fame of it must be known in the country ; 
1 the simple resolves of the Court will do nothing ; they 
have depreciated in a twofold proportion to the circulating 
medium. 

Classing the men, I think, is the surest way, and will 
be the best, if the licentiousness of the people can be 
made to submit to it, and the civil authority will act with 
a proper spirit and politically it will answer our wishes, 
but if this should be thought inexpedient they must offer 
such bounties as will engage them, whether to be paid in 



116 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

money, specie or land, the several towns must be the best 
judges, even this will be cheaper than the present mode, 
for I am certain that we shall have no peace 'till we put 
ourselves into a condition to fight our enemy that will 
continue to the end of the war. 

One great inducement, particularly to the six months' 
men, would be a good uniform, perhaps equal to any 
bounty we could give them. They are young, gay, and 
poorly clothed at present, and will be almost naked before 
their times expire. Indeed, no pains can be too great, 
no jewel too precious to part with, that will answer our 
purpose, but what bounty would answer that end is to 
me unknown. 

As an individual and citizen, I wish, let the cost be 
what it will, that the men should be raised for the war. 
I wish to see the army on a respectable footing, tho I 
shall not have the honor of belonging to it another year. 
My circumstances are such that I must retire from service 
[or be] ruined, but shall carry my best regards for the 
army with me. The gentlemen that compose it will have 
my warmest wishes for their prosperity and happiness. 

I am, dear General, with esteem and regard, 
Your most obedient and humble servant. 

John Paterson. 

My best compliments to your family and the families 
of the house. 

Hon ble Maj r General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Oct 24 th , 1780. 

- Dear General, — The last evening I was honored 
with yours of the 21 st , 21 st , and 22 nd instant, to which I 
shall duly attend. 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 167, 168. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM IIEATn. 117 

The minister of France passed by the Peekskill road 
yesterday before I was honored with your letter or heard 
of his approach. 

The enemy did not come out as was expected, and 
Col Hazen has returned. I shall appoint a court of 
enquiry for 1/ Col Varick, & c , and facilitate M r Granger's 
trying experiments in gunnery when he arrives. 

A deserter from the British artillery came to this post 
to-day ; he left New York last Saturday ; sayes it was 
reported in New York that General Clinton had gone 
with the troops which lately sailed, — their destination 
variously conjectured ; that General Kniphausen com- 
mands ; that the troops that lately arrived at New York 
were said to be only recruits, 102 of which were for the 
six companies of artillery ; that the Cork fleet had 
arrived, &°. 

It was my intention on my first arrival to have repre- 
sented to your Excellency that there is at Providence in 
the State of Rhode Island a large quantity of ammunition 
and ordnance stores, I think too many to be trusted at 
that place, and are not altogether so well secured as they 
should be if their present reposetorys are to be considered 
as perminent. I submit it [to] your Excellency. 

I cannot but express an anxiety at the prospect we at 
present have of proper supplies for this important post. 
We but just obtain a daily supply of provisions when the 
magazines should contain a supply for an emergency. 
One long storm or spell of severe weather would drive 
us on the verge of want. I cannot yet learn from what 
quarter permanent supplies are to be drawn. A large 
quantity of salted meat and flour should be in magazines 
before winter. I cannot learn that any preparations are 
makeing in this vicinity for puting up the former. Would 
it not be much the best and least expensive to have the 
beef killed and salted as near the post as possible ; it 
will save a great expenc in the transportation and be 



118 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

within our reach. I request to know on whom I am to 
call or depend for supplies of every kind, not only for 
present use but to replenish the magazines. When I am 
ascertained of this no exertions of mine shall be wanting 
to secure them if possible in season ; and I shall avoid 
troubleing your Excellency with complaints on that head, 
unless necessity compels me. I have written to his 
Excellency Governor Clinton and Col° Hay on the sub- 
ject; have requested the assistance and support of the 
former and exertions of the latter. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I am just informed that a number of prisoners 
made the escape from the provost at Fishkill the last 
night, by diging upwards of twenty feet under ground. 

W. H. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THOMAS CUSHIN T G.* 

West Point, Oct' 27 th , 1780. 

Sir, — Yours of Sep tr last, the precise date of which I 
cannot recollect, respect'g the recruiting your line of 
the army, came safe to hand. Being ordered to this post 
has prevented my makeing those enquiries which you 
desired, and I should have done had I proceeded to the 
army where all your troops except Col Henry Jackson's 
reg* and part of the artillery are ; but on my arrival 
here 1 took the earliest oppertunity to write Gen 1 Glover 

* Thomas Cashing, at the time this letter was written Lieutenant-Governor of Massa- 
chusetts, was born in Boston March 24, 1725, graduated at Harvard College in 1744, and 
died in his native town Feb. 28, 1788. He filled many important public positions, both 
before and during the Revolution, and was one of the most influential and honored of the 
patriot leaders. He was one of the founders of the American Academy of Arts and 
Sciences. See Drake's Dictionary of American Biography, p. 237. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATII. 110 

on the subject, and enclosed your letter and desired his 
attention to its objects. I have not received an answer 
from him, but have lately received a letter from General 
Patterson. The manner in which the army for- a con- 
siderable time past have been fed, cloathecl, and paid, 
especially the two latter, has greatly discouraged them ; 
to this may be added the triffleing consideration they 
have and do receive for their notes of compensation. 
Yet I think all that the soldiery have suffered, which is 
scarcly to be parrelleled in history, may be surmounted 
if ample means are afforded in future, for many of them 
are really much attached to the service which their con- 
duct has fully proved, but, depend upon it, that if some 
speedy and effectual measures are not taken to recruit, 
cloath, feed, and pay your army, the period of its diso- 
lution cannot be far distant. This ought to be attended 
to immediately ; you well know, Sir, how anxious I was 
the last winter to have your line recruited. I have ever 
since lamented that many hundreds of fine fellows were 
lost who might have been inlisted, many may be inlisted 
now if the matter is attended to, even upon the old 
bounty if it could be paid down immediately, as the sight 
of money is now precious among the soldiery ; but some- 
thing more must be done to induce the number you want 
to complete your quota. You must give them an ade- 
quate bounty, and at any rate a suit of good warm cloths 
as soon as they inlist and pass muster. Nothing will con- 
tribute more to the recruiting service than the latter. 
You must also take proper measures to feed them well, 
and at least certain measures that they shall be paid 
their wages agreable to the establishment you fix with 
them. If this is done you will not want either men or 
an army. Our country has force, spirit, and resources 
sufficient. Nothing is wanting but to call them out and 
guide them properly. If this is done our warfare will 
soon have an honorable and happy issue; without this 



120 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1780. 

we put every thing extremely at hazard, to say the least. 
I wish to say much more, but want of time forbids. 
I am, with great regard and esteem, Sir, 
Your most obed t serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon bl Thos Cushing, Esq r . 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fish-Kill, 28 th Octo r , 1780. 

D R Sir, — This will be delivered to you by M r Weeks, 
a respectable refugee from Long Island, who has been 
from thence since the enemy sott down before the lines 
at Brookline. He has been wagon master at these 
posts since you first commanded at Peeks-Kill. The 
pres* arangement of the Q. M. Gen 1 department has so 
displeased him that he will not serve in it. Gen 1 Greene 
prevailed on him to go to the island for intelligence for 
the common cause and has his orders for . that purpose. 
He waits on you for your orders ; altho he is not a volun- 
teer in this business he is determined to do any thing in 
his power to serve America. If you should think proper 
to send him, he may be relied on for his integrity, but he 
ought not to be sent in such circumstances as to subject 
him to the denomination of a spy or Party Blue. I need 
not inform you of the importance of good intelligence to 
your post and the army in general. M r Weeks' knowl- 
edge of the island and his influence there will give him 
singular advantage in that service. By a letter from the 
Commander in Chief of the 24 th instant I am at liberty 
to go to Congress whenever I can get ready. In the 
mean time, I will chearfully give you any assistance in 
my power, and should the enemy make any serious dem- 
onstrations against your post I beg to have the earliest 
notice of it. The cold season is fast advancing, and un- 
less your house for roots is soon covered, they will perish 



* For a notice of General McDougall, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 106 n. — Eds. 



1780.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 121 

as they did last year. If the chain is extended much 
longer, it will be difficult to be brought in ; and the logs 
will get so water soaked that you will meet with much 
embarasment in the spring if they are not dried in the 
winter. From present appearances there is little dan- 
ger of any serious opperations above you this campaign. 
Therefore were I in your situation, I would make the 
necessary preparations to get it in by the midle of next 
month at farthest ; we delayed it too long the two pre- 
ceding years and had like to have lost it the first winter 
after it was extended. Col. Tuper got it in last year 
with great ease, and I suppose may be readily got for the 
purpose this year. It is a very troublesome tiling to 
manage in cold w r eather. From my knowledge of the 
post I have taken the liberty to suggest those matters, 
which I hope you will excuse, and I am confident unless 
you exercise the utmost power given by the civil au- 
thority to punish the cow and horse theives, they will 
harrass you and the troops during the winter and spring, 
and greatly distress the country below and near Crom- 
pond. Last autumn and winter the gen 1 officers that 
quartered in the house I rent at Peeks-Kill with the 
wagoners burnt me an hundred cords of wood, which I 
had ready cutt on the farm. I wish now to have five of 
the new levies to cutt that quantity or a part of it. 
Major McDougall is at the house, if you think proper to 
order that number over to take his orders; it will be 
some reparation for the damage. 

I shall have the pleasure of paying you a visit before I 
go on to Congress. 

I am, d r Sir, with sentiments of esteem and respect, 
Your humble serv*. 

Alex r M c Dougall. 

P. S. The want of plentyfull rain for near eighteen 
months has so dried up the springs and brooks in this 



122 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

vicinity, that I fear the consequences to the army ; many 
of the inhabitants have not good water to drink who 
used to have great plenty of it. 

Major Gen 1 Heath. 



GEORGE CLINTON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

POUGHKEEPSIE, Oct r 30 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your letter of the 17 th instant reached me 
on my pursuit after Sir John Johnson, about 14 miles 
above Fort Herkeimer. Gansevoort's and Weissenfel's 
regiments did not arrive at Albany until the enemy were 
driven out of the country, and those to the northward 
had recrossed the lakes and returned to the neighbor- 
hood of Ticonderoga. The inhabitants on the northern 
frontiers, from the easy access the enemy had among 
them, were greatly distressed, and Col Gansevoort before 
my return to Albany from the westw d by the advice of 
Gen 1 Ten Broeck marched his regiment to cover that 
part of the country and prevent its being abandon'd. 
Weissenfels marched to Schenectady. The levies incor- 
porated into it, whose times expire about the middle of 
December, were immediately to march to Fort Herkeimer 
to keep open the communication with Fort Schuyler. 
The regiment itself will remain at Schenectady until a 
competent supply of provisions can be procured for the 
garrison of Fort Schuyler during the winter to escort it 
up. A very inconsiderable part of the supplies for this 
service is as yet provided, and unless particular attention 
is paid to this business as the season for water transporta- 
tion in the course of a month will be over, and it will be 
impossible to forward it by land, the post must in the 
course of the winter be abandoned. The newspaper will 
give you a pretty just account of the late progress of the 
enemy on the frontiers, except as to the devastations 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 123 

committed by them, which it might not be so prudent to 
publish. They have destroyed at least 200 dwellings and 
150,000 bushels of wheat, with a proportion of other 
grain and forage; though by the rapid pursuit after 
them a considerable tract of country which wou'd have 
shared the same fate was saved. 

I shall be happy in rendering you every assistance in my 
power in the execution of your important command; but, 
believe me, Sir, the distresses of this State are such that 
unless those which have experienced less of the war make 
greater exertions than they have lately done there will 
be great difficulties in maintaining even your post. 

I find Weissenfel's regiment exceedingly deficient in 
point of clothing for the climate to which they are 
destined. I should have been glad, therefore, if some 
other regiment better provided could have been ordered 
to that duty, especially as I find from this consideration, 
and because the troops of this State conceive it an hard- 
ship to be obliged perpetually to garrison that post, it is 
become extremely disagreable to them. If the direction 
of this matter does not lie with you, I shall be obliged by 
your communicating this sentiment to his Excellency the 
Commander in Chief. 

I remain, with perfect esteem, dear Sir, 

Your most obed* servant. 

Geo : Clinton- 

The Hon bIe Major Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON. 

Head Quarters, West Point, Nov 2 nd , 1780. 

Sir, — I was this morning honored with yours of the 

30 th ult°. I sincerely feel for the unfortunate sufferers 

from the late depredations of the enemy in the northern 

counties of this State, as well as for the public who must 



124 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

unavoidably share in the consequences, and I fear it will 
be my lot to experience no small part of them. 

I most heartily thank you for your assurances of 
assistance. I assure you, Sir, that it is a principal conso- 
lation to me under those disagreable aspects which at 
present hang over our prospects of supplies; but I will 
hope the best. 

Colonel Weissenfell's regiment was pointed out to me 
by General Washington to garrison Fort Schuyler. I 
have this morning submitted that paragraph of your 
letter to his Excellency's consideration. 

General James Clinton is orderd to take the command 
at Albany. He left this place a day or two since. From 
his knowledge of that part of the country and attention 
to business I natter myself he will seasonably take 
every step that may be necessary in that quarter. 

We shall be in extreme want of a large quantity of 
boards and shingles at this post for covering the troops 
and for the security of the post. I fear the D. Q. M. G. 
will not be able to procure them, especially in season, 
without some extra assistance from your Excellency. 
Col Hughes will be able to inform you w r hat quantity 
will be necessary, and I beg leave to solicit your assist- 
ance in such way as you may think proper. 

We have no news of consequence at present. When- 
ever I obtain any shall do myself the honor of communi- 
cating it to you. 

Joshua Smith is just sent here to be confined. Should 
you demand him, it is my duty immediately to deliver 
him. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Clinton. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 125 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Nov 4 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have just received a letter from 
his Excellency Governor Clinton dated at Poughkeepsie 
the 3 rd inst., in which is the following paragraph, — 

" By two expresses who arrived last night from Albany 
I am informed that the enemy under Major Carleton are 
returning from Ticonderoga towards Skeensborough with 
a reinforcement of 500. Their force amounting now to 
1,600, so that we hourly expect to hear of further depre- 
dations. I have again ordered out the militia to meet 
them and Gansevoort's regiment is in that quarter." 

By the last accounts I had from Colonel Weisenfell's 
reg* they were at Schenatidy, waiting for the provisions 
which they were to escorte to Fort Schuyler. Governor 
Clinton has not asked for any further assistance. If your 
Excellency should think any necessary, upon receiving 
your pleasure it shall be ordered. 

A complaint containing several charges was yesterday 
lodged against Colonel Hazen by Major Ried of his 
regiment. The Colonel is ordered in arrest and a gen- 
eral court martial will be appointed for his tryal. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, Nov r 6 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I was honored with yours of the 
5 th a few hours since, that of the 31 st ulto. not 'till this 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 170, 171. —Eds. 



126 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

moment ; where the latter has been I cannot tell, — its 
delay has been the cause of my troubling you more than 
once on one subject. 

I shall take immediate measures for the security of 
Colonel Kossiuszko's chest ; it shall be lodged at my own 
quarters. 

Preparations are makeing for takeing up the chain ; at 
present we are obliged to tend it to prevent its sinking, 
— should a severe snow storm take place it may be its 
fate. 

I am happy to hear that flour is soon to come on for 
our relief, and most heartily thank your Excellency for 
your kind assurances that we shall constantly have a part 
of what you obtain. Our situation is peculiar ; the sur- 
rounding mountains do not afford that releif which those 
find whose situation is in a fertile soil and among wealthy 
farmers. Indeed, the troops being entirly destitute of 
money prevents there buying vegetables if they are to 
be found ; and the scantiness of their ration forbids any 
ability to barter. I request to be informed whether 
their is any prospect of the troops soon receiving the 
two months pay promised by Congress, for which they 
have been for some time impatiently waiting. 

The ill clad and raged state of the troops, and great 
complaints on that account, also constrain me to repre- 
sent their situation to your Excellency. There are many 
recruits who have been inlisted many months since for 
the war who have not yet received their clothing. This 
most materially wounds the service. If there are any 
quantities of clothing in the public stores which are to be 
distributed to the several State clothiers, I would request 
the proportion of them that will fall to the troops at this 
post as soon as your Excellency may think it convenient 
and proper, as many of the men engaged for the war 
will soon be unfit for duty unless some articles of cloth- 
ing can be issued to them. At the request of the clothier 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 127 

gen 1 I have forbidden the State clothiers issuing any 
articles (except shoes) untill the distribution is made, but 
beg such distribution may be made as soon as circum- 
stances will admit. 

I will write to the eastern States and urge the necessity 
of their forwarding their respective quotas of supplies 
before the difficult season sits in, but I am pretty certain 
that under present circumstances a competent supply of 
flour for this post only cannot be obtained from this State, 
and I am sorry to hear that large quantities of wheat and 
flour are purchasing up all over the State to be sent to 
the eastward, and it has been hinted to me by one who 
knew that some of it was intended to be sent from 
America. To allow this will most certainly be ill policy, 
since it every day grows apparant that if the war 
continues, America will become more and more the seat 
of it. 

I have executed George Baker, one of the criminals; 
he was charged with being concerned in a conspiracy to 
spike the cannon at Fort Schuyler in Sep* last, and 
intending to desert to the enemy, and inducing others 
to desert. He was found guilty of the two latter. The 
other culprits under sentence, believe I shall pardon. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv t . 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I have just sent for Col Kossiuszko's chest ; it 
was left without lock. M rs Warren saies upon the detec- 
tion of Arnold she burnt the plans lest their being found 
with her should raise a suspicion to her disadvantage. I 
shall order a further enquiry into the matter. 

W. H. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



128 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



MARQUIS DE LAFAYETTE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Light Camp, November the 13 th , 1780. 

My dear Sir, — I intended having the pleasure to 
write you a long letter, and was expecting the confirma- 
tion of the southern news that my epistle might be some 
what interesting. But upon intelligence being receiv'd 
that some of our Khode Island friends were on theyr 
way to camp, I hasten to impart to you this news, and 
to request your advices for the best route. 

Marquis de Laval, Chevalier de Chattel ux, Vicount de 
Noailles, Count de Charlus are those whom I know to be 
on the road, tho' they don't travel together, and Duke 
de Lauzun may be some time after them expected. 

I have wrote to them on theyr passage at Hartfort, 
advising them to go to Fishkills and take the back road 
to head quarters for fear of accident. But least my 
letters had miscarried, I think you will do better to send 
your orders to the commanding officer at King's Ferry, as 
well as to Fishkills. 

They will prefer arriving to my camp in order to go 
with me to head quarters. I therefore request you will 
advise them to take the back road to Paramus from where 
they must pass by my quarters near Totawa Bridge. 

Be so kind, my good friend, as to order that on the 
coming of the afore mention'd gentlemen an express be 
immediately dispatch'd to me. The General has ex- 
press'd to me a wish of knowing theyr arrival before 
hand. 

You know theyr ranks in the French army ; you know 
that each nation pays honors agreable to its own regula- 
tion ; you know my sentiments about appearing to ad- 
vantage ; you know every French officer as well, and 
the greatest part of them better than I do — what have 



1780.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 129 

I to add but that, with all sentiments of regard and 
affection, I have the honor to be, 

Yours. Lafayette. 

I think that the advices as to the route may be left at 
the several posts for all French officers who will come 
that way, — it would not do to have them catch'd by 
Tories. My best compliments wait on the gentlemen of 
your family and my friends at West Point. 

L. F. 

Honorable Major General Heath. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fish-Kill, Nov' 14 th , 1780. 

D B Sir, — I was honored with your favor of the 5 th 
instant. I know by long experience the perplexing 
nature of your command. It is a command by which 
you and every one who has it risques his reputation, 
without a probability of getting one. After all your toil 
you must be contented with a self approving conscience. 
It is, however, a consolation to you, that the Governor 
and the State will not only give you all the assistance 
in their power, but will sanctify every act of yours which 
shall be necessary for the safety of the State and the 
common cause. They do not entertain any idle jealousey 
of the army. And they have a favourable opinion of 
your prudence and attention to the rights of the citizens. 
But they fear your want of decision in some cases. Ke- 
gard to you and your command induce me to write you 
thus freely. Since I received your favor I have spent 
some time with the Governor, and find by the gen 1 state 
of the country that the scarcity of forage, and the too 
early approach of the winter, determines the inhabitants 
not to part with their forage for any money; and the 



130 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1780. 

law will justify the taking but the surplus of what they 
may have over and above the necessary quantity for their 
own catle. Judge then what must be your expectations 
above the mountains, without money and litle public 
credit. 

I doubt not Col. Hay has fully informed you on this 
subject. The season is now so far advanced that there 
is no danger of the enemy's attempting an attack on your 
posts by water. And in the winter of 1778, when he 
had 13,000 infantry, and the troops on this side of the 
river cantoned at these posts and Danbury, he had no 
enterprise. Not a single attempt was made on my 
guards at the Plains. If he should move by land your 
parties below will know it ; if by water the prevalence 
of northerly winds will give you time to call in any 
parties you may have below. For these reasons you may 
forage with safety in West Chester county, where it can 
be spared and kept from the enemy. All you get is so 
much saved to the country, and will give your post great 
releif. Your cantonments and barracks are two months 
advanced to what they have been at any season. You 
have old and new hutts and barracks to cover a greater 
number of troops than you have or will have till the 
campaign opens, and many of them are in a position 
where they cannot want wood. What of this article you 
must absolutely have for West Point should be secured. 
A suffeciency for troops in the barracks to guard against 
surprise will put out of danger; the nearness of the can- 
tonments to your principal post will otherwise save you 
from distress on account of wood. Provision and forage 
are the articles which you will be distressed for. The 
latter you may have ; and I would have sufficient to 
support the catle absolutely necessary for the village and 
West Point, without distressing a single friend to America 
within our lines. If the teams dont halt a night on the 
lines or where the forage is collecting, but move off 



1780.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 131 

a stage whenever they are loaded, there can be no risque 
in sending them down. And the troops can retire if too 
hard pressed, to cover any teams returning, either goeing 
down or coming up. And if the dragons or firm young 
men on horse back look out on the flanks there is but 
litle danger of our parties being taken in rear. This 
State in the best seasons is not a forage country, and 
these posts have always suffered for want of that article. 
In the winter of 1778 I had the most of my express busi- 
ness near the posts performed by soldiers. Three sober 
trusty men stationed at Bud's, on the post road, at the 
fork, and the like number at M r Haight's, three miles 
below Fish-Kill, would carry your and the quarter 
master's letters with more dispatch in the winter than 
horses ; with the expence only of a few pair of shoes 
extra, and some gills of rum. For distant express I was 
often obliged to rely on the country for impress. Last 
winter the snow and ice favored the transportation of 
hay for a great distant ; but our credit was then far 
better than it is now ; and such a winter as the last 
happens but once in forty. You will find that all the 
industry you are master off in collecting and ceconomy in 
useing forage, when the spring opens, you will find it 
difficult to maintain the necessary express horses, at 
a season when you will be in most danger and require 
those aids most. You are responsible for the post, and 
will be made the scape goat in case of any misfortune 
happening to the post. And I question whether you 
will be able to finish your works this autumn. If not, 
how are you without forage before grass to support catle 
to carry on your works ? The critical season with your 
post is always from the breaking up of winter till grass. 
In this period the enemy can move against you by water, 
and if the army or militia march to reinforce you, there 
will be no forage to support the catle on the road to 
supply them with provision. I found that many persons 



132 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

vissitted the post with horses, who had but very trifling 
business there, which ruined the boats, fatigued the 
ferrymen, and importuned for forage. And some of these 
would be the very first to clamour on the loss of a post. 
I therefore ordered that none but express horses should 
be brought over, and those of officers returning from 
furlough, the latter to have but twenty four hours forage. 
And but one horse allowed to each brigade whenever 
grass failed or the troops went into winter quarters. The 
artificers often have horses sculking on the Point; and 
their servants by some means or other steal your forage. 
It is much easier to procure this article at a distance than 
near, besides the means of transportation. In short the 
matter is reduced to this, they must send their horses off 
at a distance or starve here and embarass the public 
service. When I took the command of West Point last 
June sutlers, women, and children drew near one sixth 
part of the provision issued at that post ; altho the garri- 
son was then at short allowance. These abuses were 
corrected and strict garrison orders to prevent them. 
But the abuses did not rest there ; vast quantities of flour 
was sent off and sold by the bakers. And a number of 
families unconnected with the garrison and bad women 
were maintaind on provisions stolen by the soldiers out 
of the works. Since that period the command has been 
so often changed that I fear the same vermin have 
collected about you, which thro' hurry of other bussiness 
may have escaped your notice. The posts at Kings- 
Ferry are subject I fear to the same abuses. I forgot 
to mention that Co 1 Samuel Drake, Major Strong, and 
the D. Judge Advocate will be able to advise you on 
the expediency of any necessary measures you may be 
obliged to take with West Chester county not strictly 
conformable to law. They know the temper of the State 
and the county perfectly. I have by this time tres- 
passed on your patience ; but I beg you to believe that 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 133 

those loose thoughts proceed soley from a regard to you, 
the post, and the service ; and if there should be any 
thing offensive in them, ascribe it to a heart that sincerly 
wishes your command easey and honorable. Nor do I 
wish you to consider this as an offical, but a friendly, 
letter. 

As for the cloaths for the soldiers I should not have 
asked for the order, but that they are seperated from 
their corps, and some of them will be so for the winter. 
But I suppose all the soldiers that want will draw some 
articles. I never wished for a partial distribution, but 
those lads have missed of articles furnished by their 
States which their fellow soldiers have had the benefit 
of. I therefore only desire now an order to draw for 
them such things as they absolutely want within the 
allowance of Congress ; and I wish Elijah Ballacum of 
Col. Nixon's may be included. You may rest assured 
the order will not be abused. 

If the cloaths are all issued from the store to the 
troops, while those men are from their regiments, they 
will neither get continental nor State cloathing, and must 
go naked thro the winter ; or I must dismiss them and 
my horses and go without waiters. This I shall do with 
some of them before I sett off for Phi a . Perhaps some 
articles in store may be useful to me in camp, altho there 
is no cloth fit for officers. I will go over there for that 
purpose, if you think proper to send me an order to the 
effect of my last request on that subject. 

I am, d r Sir, with respect, your humble servant. 

Alex k M c Dougall. 

Major Gen 1 Heath. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, West Point, Nov r 15 th , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 14 th instant came to 
hand this evening. His Excellency General Washington 



134 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

in a letter of the 9 th instant, just come to hand, has been 
pleased to express his pleasure that the clothing should 
not be issued untill the troops go into winter quarters, 
and a just and equal distribution is made. This is against 
my giving any orders, but supposing you may have 
occasion for one or two of your servants to attend you, I 
have ventured to give orders for two of them, leaving it 
to you to insert the names of those you choose. The 
others must wait untill the general distribution takes 
place. 

With respect to your own I cannot give an order with- 
out specifying the articles and quantity for which it is 
given, which must be such as are specified in the resolve 
of Congress. I will with great pleasure give such an 
order when you honor me with a list of such articles as 
you wish to have. 

I am, with great regard and esteem, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

Major Gen 1 McDougall. W. HeATH. 

P. S. Please insert the Col ' 8 name and the State to 
which the soldiers belong. 

W.H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Nov. 18 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have been honored* with yours of 
the 16 th . The officers of the Jersey brigade assure me 
on honor that the recruits borne on the return exhibited 
by them were inlisted since the month of March last. I 
have therefore given them an order for the clothing, re- 
ducing the articles of shirts and hose to one of the former 
and a pair of the latter each. 

• Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 177, 178. — Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM 1IEATII. 135 

M r Ludwick has just finished the ovens, and this day 
began bakeing. An uneasiness is likely to arise which it . 
is necessary to prevent. In the establishment of the 
ration the troops are to receive one pound of bread or 
flour per day. The former is supposed by many to be 
hard bread, since the pound of flour will make more than a 
pound of soft bread, and if the bread is slack baked still 
much more. Therefore, to do justice to the troops, I am 
informed that Major General M c Dougall when he com- 
manded here directed that for one hundred pounds of 
flour 120 pounds of bread should be delivered by the 
bakers. Gen 1 Paterson required five pounds more, but 
the former seems to have been considered as a standing 
rule by the artillery who have remained at the post. 
The other troops naturly fall in with them, and are form- 
ing an opinion that if they receive but one pound of soft 
bread, or indeed anything less than what has been the 
practise, they are injured. The officers have represented 
to me that an alteration at this time when the troops 
have so many discouragements to encounter will be 
attended with bad consequences to the service. M r 
Ludwick informs me that if one hundred and twenty 
pounds of soft bread is delivered for a hundred pounds of 
flour, there will remain about ten pounds on every 
hundred towards defreying the expense of bakeing. 
For my own part I am fully of opinion that the 120 lb. 
ought to be delivered, but as an order published to that 
purpose by me nray be productive of uneasiness in other 
parts of the army, I request your Excellency's opinion 
on the matter as soon as may be convenient. In the 
mean time I have verbally directed M r Ludwick to 
deliver bread as has been before practised here untill 
your pleasure is known. In this way ten pounds in the 
hundred which now goes to the private bakers will be 
saved to the public, and uneasiness among the troops 
avoided. 



136 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

Lt. Col Antill, with his wife and three or four children, 
have just come out of New York. He has applied to me 
for relief, being unable at present to provide for his 
family. I have given orders for one ration of provisions 
to be issued to his wife and one to the children collec- 
tively, makeing with his own four rations to be charged 
to his account untill your pleasure is signified. I submit 
it accordingly. 

Lt. Col Antill informs me that many Convention 
soldiers get to New York from Albemarle, Virginia, by 
a cross rout, crossing the Deleware below Mud Island, 
and from thence to the cedar swamps near the seashore 
towards Sandy Hook, that provisions are secretly con- 
veyed for them and distributed by the Tories, and that 
not less than six hundred have come to New York that 
way, that officers are appointed to receive and muster 
them, &°. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO COMTE DE ROCHAMBEAU. 

Head Quarters, West Point, Deer 2 nd , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 3 rd and 10 th ult°, and have had the pleasure of hearing 
from you by Count Chatsleaux and other officers of your 
army, who have made us very happy in visiting this post. 
We have not much news of consequence. Major Tal- 
madge of the 2 nd reg 1 light dragoons has lately executed 
an enterprise on Long Island with an address and gal- 
lantry that has done him honor. Major Talmadge 
crossed the Sound with about 60 dismounted dragoons, 
marched to the south side of the island, and with his 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 137 

troops thrown into three attacks on the morning of the 
23 rd ult° assaulted, surprised and took Fort S fc George, 
made one lieu* col , one cap*, a surgeon, one subaltern, 
and fifty rank and file prisoners, destroyed the works, 
took and destroyed two armed vessels, and on his return 
mounted a few men of his detachment who made an 
oblique excursion and destroyed the king's magazine at 
Coram supposed to consist of 300 tons of hay. The 
party joined the detachment and the whole returned in 
safety, with one man only wounded. The enemy had 
six or seven killed and wounded. Yesterday the prison- 
ers with the colours of the fort were brought here. The 
last week we made a grand forage towards King's 
Bridge, took three or four prisoners, brought of some 
cattle, and 125 loads of forage. No late news from the 
southward. Yesterday six brigades of the army arrived 
at this post, where they are to take winter quarters. 

I frequently think of and mention you, my dear Gen- 
eral, and the many agreable hours spent while at Rhode 
Island. 

With the most inviolable attachment, I have the honor 
to be, dear General, 

Your obed* serv fc . 

Gen 1 Rochambeau. \\r # Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, Dec r 3 rd , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours 
of the 28 th ulto., have made a distribution of the troops 
assigned to my command conformable to your pleasure 
where it has been signified, and in other cases have 
acted according to my own discretion, and hope it will 
meet your Excellency's approbation. 

The New Jersey Line have gone to Pompton. 



138 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780, 

The New York reg ts now embarking their baggage in 
order to proceed to Albany. 

The Connecticut Line with Col Webb's reg*, sent over 
to them, are huting back of Constitution Island to the 
north of Danforth's in very good ground and near the 
post. This Line has one reg* assigned to the north re- 
doubt, another to the middle redoubt, and a third to 
Constitution Island as their alarm post, and a detachment 
of eighty men hutted near the north redoubt to be at 
hand to support the guards in case of an attack untill 
the regiments assigned to the respective posts can arrive ; 
the remainder of the Line to be ready to act as occasion 
may require. This Line mount a cap ts guard at the Con- 
tinental village, a cap* guard at Constitution Island, and 
a subaltern's guard in the north and the same in the 
middle redoubt. 

Massachusetts Line, drawing for their quarters, their 
disposition as follows : — 

1 st brigade to hut in the wood back of the garrison. 

2 nd brigade quartered in the great barrack. 

3 rd brigade to occupy the huts built by the New York 
reg ts . 

4 th brigade* quartered in the barracks in Fort Clinton, 
& c . This brigade have the defence of Fort Clinton and 
its dependencies. Two reg ts of the Massachusetts Line 
are assigned to the defence of Fort Putnam, one to Fort 
Wyllis, d° Fort Webb, d° N. 1, d° 2, do N. 3, do N. 4; 
the remainder of the Line to act as occasion may 
require. 

The 2 nd Rhode Island reg* gone to hut near Robinson's 
mills. 

The New Hampshire Line hutted in the Highlands 
north east of Soldiers' Fortune. 

2 nd dragoons gone to Connecticut, a detachment of 
one hundred and fifty regular troops with some State 
militia on the lines, with orders to patrole from Hudson's 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 139 

River above Croten to Pine's Bridge and down to North 
Castle and Bedford. 

Colonel Hazen's reg ts gone to Fishkill, to do the duties 
at that post. Horses have been sent off. The six months 
levies discharging in the manner proposed by your 
Excellency. 

I am sorry that it is not in my power to add that we 
are well supplied with provisions. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Garrison of West Point, Dec r 9 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I am honored with yours of the 8 th . 
The 100 barrels of salted beef, or as many tierces as will 
be equal to that quantity, the beef being chiefly in the 
latter, shall be forwarded to Albany as soon as a vessel 
can be procured for the purpose. 

The invalids of the six months levies have been dis- 
charged, and for some days past six men of those worst 
clothed from each regiment; this having taken of the 
principal part of those worst clad, I have ordered three 
from each regiment to be discharged daily. This num- 
ber shall be encreased or diminished as your Excellency 
may think proper. Some of the three years men who 
have one, two, and three months to serve are almost naked, 
and unfit for duty. They must be clothed or discharged ; 
which of the two is your Excellency's pleasure ? 

Some doubts have arisen between the officers who are 
allowed to draw two rations in consequence of a resolve 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 180, 181. — Eds. 



140 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

of Congress and the late order of your Excellency and 
the commissaries. The latter suppose the extra ration 
should be drawn on each issuing day or not at all. The 
officers suppose this extra ration designed to enable them 
to live more comfortably and that they may dispose of 
it for other species of provisions or vegetables, that if 
they draw it on every issuing day a great part of it may 
be lost or rendered of little advantage to them, whereas if 
they draw it at such times within the month as might 
give them an opportunity to exchange it it would be a 
real relief to them. I wish to be informed if your 
Excellency has any objections to the last mode, as it 
will be the same to the public and much more beneficial 
to the officers. 

Some of the State clothiers have some articles of cloth- 
ing and blankets sent to them by their States. The 
nakedness of the troops calls loudly for the issue of them. 
The present injunctions on the clothiers forbid it. 
Some of the officers think that by the ordnance of cloth- 
ing whatever the State clothier can obtain from his State 
is to be distributed to the troops belonging to the State 
untill they are supplied, and in case of a surplusage that 
the surplusage is to be transferred to the public clothier, 
that if this is not attended to it will discourage the States 
from exertions to provide for their own troops. I have 
not the ordnance by me, but General Huntington thinks 
such is the tenor of it. Your Excellency can best deter- 
mine, and whether it is to be strictlv attended to. 

I take the liberty to inclose Colonel Hazen's arrest of 
Major Reed. 

Our situation here on account of provisions is really 
alarming, totally destitute of flour (except eight barrels 
which arrived this evening) ; the want of forage forbids 
any number of beef cattle being kept on the Point; the 
salted meat in the magazines but a trifle, if necessity 
should force us to use it. If a severe storm should hap- 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 141 

pen, and the river be impassible but three or four days, 
the troops must inevitably suffer. I cannot learn that 
any flour of consequence is coming from any quarter. 
Large quantities of meat are puting up at a distance, 
but unless the season is uncommon the time is nigh when 
it will [be] very difficult to transport it to this post. 

Two deserters with their arms from Robinson's corps 
came up this day. They both assert that the enemy are 
short of provisions and fuel, that but few of the Cork 
fleet have arrived, that their ration since the arrival of 
the fleet has been reduced, and at present is six pounds 
of bread p r week, ten ounces of salt beef, and one j ill of 
rum p r day. 

I have this moment received the enclosed from Col° 
Hay, and a few hours since the one from Gen 1 Clinton. 
I request to be informed by the return of the express 
whether the 100 barrels of beef is to be detained or for- 
warded with loss of time. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Garrison, West Point, Dec 14 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I some days since signified to Col 
Hazen your opinion respecting the arrest of Major Reid. 
I this morning received his answer, coppy of which I 
take the liberty to inclose. 

We are now turning our attention to the salting a 
quantity of beef in bulk at this post. Col Hay has also 
proposed its being done in hutts at the Connecticut and 
New Hampshire quarters. The obsticles are the want of 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 181, 182. —Eds. 



142 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

boards or plank for erecting or securing proper places. 
The materials cannot be procured here. A quantity of 
boards, & c , expected have been stoped at New Windsor 
or Newburgh. Perhaps they are wanted as much there 
as here ; if they are not, I wish a part of them might 
be spared to compleat the store, as the beef cattle are 
every day wasteing, and the season nearly arrived when 
it will be very difficult, if possible, to execute the 
business. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Garrison, West Point, Dec r 17 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I take the liberty to enclose a rep- 
resentation made to me by M r Frye, Ensign and Pay- 
master to the 9 th Massachusetts reg\ He has been a 
faithfull and diligent officer. I beg leave to submit his 
case [to] your Excellency's consideration. It will, I 
believe, be agreable to him to join the corps of invalids 
at Boston, if you think proper. I am informed that 
there are one or two other officers nearly in the same 
predicament ; as they are not supernumerary they cannot 
retire on the benefit of half-pay. 

Enclosed also is the proceedings of the former general 
court martial on the tryal of Joshua Ferris. They were 
obtained from Major General M c Dougall, and did not 
come to my hands untill this morning. 

For some days we have been discharging six of the 
new levies p r day from each reg fc . Their numbers are 

* Washington's answer to this letter and the letters of December 18 is printed in 5 
Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 182. —Eds. 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 143 

now very much reduced. Shall we continue to discharge 
this number daily untill the whole are gone, which will 
be soon, or lessen the number, or desist from discharging 
any more untill their times expire ? 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Dec. 18 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I have sent a detachment under 
the command of a capable, dilligent field officer to dis- 
mount, launch, and bring up the boats from King's 
Ferry, which have been lately brought there on car- 
riages. I wish the quarter-master general or one of his 
assistants may point out the most proper place at Mur- 
derer's Creek for laying them up, that the officer on his 
arrival may meet his directions. It is not probable the 
boats will be at Murderer's Creek before to-morrow. 

Two of the prisoners of war who lately made their 
escape from the provost at Fishkill have been taken up 
and brought back by a party of militia. One of the 
militia who took them represents to me that his son and 
a near friend of his are prisoners with the enemy. He 
requests that they may be exchanged for the prisoners 
retaken. I have answered him that I would mention it 
to your Excellency. 

I have the honor to be, with the most perfect respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. HEATn. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



144 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Garrison, West Point, Dec. 18 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I am this evening honored with 
yours of the 16 th . I will direct that Major Reid be 
brought to trial on Thursday next, and if the necessary 
evidence for compleating the trial cannot then be pro- 
duced, and the court should think proper to postpone 
the trial, I will further direct that more rigid confine- 
ment than is common shall not be exercised. 

I shall observe your directions respecting Joshua 
Ferris. 

I hope if there are any boards to spare the Q. M. G. 
will order them down immediately, the slaughtering the 
cattle being suspended entirely on the compleating of 
the -store. It was intended to have made use of another 
store untill the new one should be finished, but it is 
found to be so infested with rats as will expose the beef 
to almost certain damage and loss. 

If any deserters should come out from the enemy they 
shall be sent up to Head Quarters without delay. 

We are again short of flour. The troops received three 
quarters of a pound only to-day ; to-morrow must be 
reduced to half a pound, and next day none, unless some 
should arrive. A quantity is expected down the river 
and from Ringwood if we are not disappointed. 

It is still reported that a large embarkation is about to 
take place at New York, but their destination unknown. 
Col Delancy is also said to be collecting his corps. I 
have cautioned the officer on the lines to great vigilance 
and ordered the New Hampshire and Rhode Island reg ts 
to be in readiness to advance to Crompond if necessary. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 



i 



1780.] WILLIAM HEATH. 145 

P. S. Count de Noalle and Count Damours are just 
arrived from Philadelphia, and lodge here this night. 
They are on their way to Albany. Count Chatleaux 
passed up on the west side of the river; the former on 
the east side. 

W. H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Dec r 28 th , 1780. 

Dear General, — I was honored with yours of the 
25 th . Have ordered two detachments, each to consist 
of one captain, two subalterns, three Serjeants, drum and 
fife, and fifty rank and file, to garrison Verplank's and 
Stony Points. The former I have given to Cap t Sumner 
of the Massachusetts Line ; the latter to a picked captain 
from the Connecticut Line ; have given each very partic- 
ular written instructions ; have desired Colonel Living- 
ston to put the nocommissioned officers and soldiers of 
the two regiments in motion to join their respective 
Lines. There are some commissioned officers who are 
arranged who will conduct them. Have also desired an 
accurate return of the names and rank of the officers on 
the day of dissolution to be transmitted to Head Quar- 
ters agreable to your directions. 

I have heard nothing from Cap fc Machin respecting the 
road you were pleased to advertise me he was directed 
to mark ; as soon as he reports it to be done parties shall 
be immediately ordered to work on it. 

I have been paying attention to the foraging below. 
Col Hughes still remains at Albany. I have sent for 
Major Campbell, his assistant at the village. He informs 
me there will be much difficulty in procuring teams, and 
if it were practicable, from the deepness of the roads it 
would not be the most advantageous, as the loads would 
be but trifleing, and the fatigue to the teams very great. 

10 



146 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

With respect to the water craft, he informs me it is very 
uncertain. I have directed him to make every exertion 
in his power in every way and manner to get the forage 
off, and to Col Hull to afford such protection and assist- 
ance as may be necessary. 

Col Hull wrote me yesterday that he should this morn- 
ing at sunrise have all the teams in that quarter collected 
at Pine's Bridge, and properly covered for a forage. He 
also informs me that from the best intelligence he has 
been able to obtain the fleet has not sailed from New 
York. 

If the Q. M. G. cannot devise some way and means for 
quickening the supplies of flour, salt, & c , we shall inevi- 
tably suffer. We cannot keep two days' allowance of the 
former on hand ; of the latter there is not a sufficiency 
to secure the meat. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 

P. S. Cap* Watson, who has been a prisoner on Long 
Island, which place he left a week ago yesterday, this 
moment arrived here. He informs me the fleet saild on 
the day he came away, between forty and fifty sail ; the 
transports chiefly large ships ; their destination variously 
conjectured. 

W. H. 



WILLIAM HULL* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Danforth's, near Pine's Bridge, Decemb r 30 th , 1780. 

Dear Gen l , — Last evening a detachment from Col 
Delancey's corps, consisting of about a hundred foot and 

* William Hull was born in Derby, Conn., June 24, 1753, graduated at Yale College in 
1772, and died in Newton, Mass., Nov. 29, 1825. On the breaking out of hostilities with 
the mother country he entered the army, and served with distinction throughout the war. 



1780.] WILLIAM HULL. 147 

fifty horse, marched as far as North Castle, where they 
made a short halt for refreshment, and this morning at 
daylight proceeded to Bedford New Purchase for the 
purpose of collecting the cattle from that quarter. Cap fc 
Prichard, who had taken a position near Middle Patten, 
having intelligence of this movement, marched early in 
the morning and at sunrise met their van at the above 
mentioned place. A skirmish ensued, and the enimy 
finding themselves opposed by troops who preserved 
their order immediately began their retreat. This com- 
pany, being joined by a party of militia, pressed hard on 
their rear, kept up a constant fire, and obliged them to 
retreat with great rapidity. The pursuit was continued 
as far as Young's, where our troops being so inferior in 
numbers, and a large part of them destitute of shoes, and 
much fatigued, it was thought adviseable to desist. Cap t 
Prichard informs me the enimy's loss to his knowledge 
was one killed and several wounded, which they carried 
off in a waggon which they took from an inhabitant. 
Altho' a number of his company had balls thro' their 
catouch boxes & cloaths, yet fortunately not a man was 
hurt. They retook four oxen and between thirty and 
forty sheep. The enimy's stock of plunder, which was 
the object of the expedition, was eight or ten head of 
cattle. 

Their plan was to have collected the cattle from North 
Castle, Bedford, and the Middle Patten and returned by 
the way of Kingstreet, and the inhabitants inform me 
that the activity and good conduct of Capt. Prichard 

In 1805 he was appointed governor of Michigan Territory, and in 1812 he was given com- 
mand of the northwestern army. In this capacity he was not successful ; and August 17 he 
surrendered Detroit to the British. For this he was tried and convicted by a court martial 
of cowardice and neglect of duty, and sentenced to be shot. The sentence was approved by 
the President, but was not executed. " The general verdict of succeeding generations," it 
has been said, " has been that General Hull was made a scapegoat for the blunders of the 
government, and that no case was made out for his guilt on either of the charges brought 
against him." See Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, vol. iii. pp. 308, 309; 
Dexter's Yale Biographies, third series, pp. 444-448; General Hull's Military and Civil 
Life, by Maria Campbell and James F. Clarke. — Eds. 



148 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1780. 

saved them at least a hundred head. They set fire to 
a number of houses in Bedford New Purchase, but all 
were happily extinguished. Their darling passion for 
plunder was as far gratified as their hast would admit. 
Altho' I am happy that the principal object of their 
expedition has been defeated, yet I feel exceedingly 
mortified that neither Cap* Prichard or the parties of 
observation which I had sent below gave me such season- 
able intelligence as rendered it possible to come up with 
them with the main body. This, however, is not imput- 
able to any neglect, but to an unfortunate concurrence of 
circumstances. 

It was nine o'clock this morning, before I was advised 
of the excursion, on which all the troops were ordered 
to assemble at Pine's Bridge, from whence I marched to 
the road leading from North Castle to Young's. On my 
arrival to the road near Shapaquaw Meeting House, the 
enimy had past more than two hours, and having intelli- 
gence that Cap fc Prichard was retiring, I imagined a 
pursuit would be fruitless. Had I received early intelli- 
gence of this movement, by a rapid march I could have 
thrown my detachment in their front, or at least on their 
right flank, with the most perfect safety, and should been 
able in all probability to have given a much better 
account of them. 

It is unnecessary to mention the conduct of Cap* 
Prichard, his company, or the millitia who mustered on 
the occasion, in terms of commendation as the relation 
of facts places it in an honorable point of view. 

I am, Sir, with the highest respect, 

Your Honor's most obed fc serv\ 

W M . Hull, 
Lt. Col 3 d Mass tts Beg'. 

Hon ble Major Gen 1 Heath. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 149 

WILLIAM HEATH TO WILLIAM HULL. 

Garrison, West Point, Dec 31 st , 1780. 

Dear Sir, — Your very agreable favor of yesterday 
came to hand this afternoon. The conduct of Cap 11 Prit- 
chard and the brave men who were with him does him 
and them much honor ; be pleased to inform him that his 
conduct has my fullest approbation. I can only lament 
that you did not receive early notice of the enemy's 
being out, as I think you would have given them reason 
to repent of their temerity. The spirit and behaviour 
of the militia does them much credit; their seconding 
the regular troops on such occasions will inspirit both 
and greatly deter the enemy from their plundering 
expeditions. 

I shall in the morning transmit your letter to his 
Excellency the Commander in Chief, that he may be 
fully ascertained of every particular. With compliments 
of the season, 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. This moment received yours of this date ; hope 
your bravery and precaution will afford new matter of 
approbation. 

Lt. Col Hull. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO WILLIAM HULL. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 2 nd , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of yesterday came to hand 
this morning. I am happy to find that by your vigilance, 
precaution, and good conduct, the inhabitants are likely 
to enjoy protection, and the plundering enemy to be 
defeated and disapointed in their attempts. 



150 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

His Excellency was pleased with Cap* Pritchard's con- 
duct. I have taken notice of it in the orders of this 
day. 

I have ordered about three thousand carteredges to be 
sent to you, which you will dispose of as the service may 
require. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obedient serv*. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

P. S. Col Humphries and all his party are safely 
returned. By the violence of the winds they were driven 
down past New York, one boat as far as Sandy Hook, the 
others past between Staten Island and the main. The 
whole finally landed at Brunswick. One boat was lost 
but no person. 

W. H. 

Col Hull. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO SAMUEL H. PARSONS* 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r ^ 5 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — You have doubtless heard what has taken 
place in the Pensylvania Line, viz*, that they have 
mutinied and marched towards Philadelphia. As it is 
impossible to keep this a secret it is best it should be 
properly divulged to the troops. This is the wish of his 
Excellency the Commander in Chief who has just now 
been here. I therefore request you would be pleased 
immediately on receipt hereof to call the commanding 
officers of reg t9 together, and let them hand it to the 
commissioned officers, the commissioned to the non-com- 
missioned, and they to the privates, for it is best not as 
yet to mention it [in] public orders — it may be men- 

* For a notice of General Parsons, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. 154 n.— Eds. 






1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 151 

tioned in such a way as to cause our troops to feel an 
ambition on the reflection of the exhibition of more virtue 
under equal trials. I wish you also to enquire of the 
officers the present temper of the men and whether there 
is any the least grounds to apprehend any disagreable 
consequences happening in your Line. 

The last accounts we have from the Jersies are that 
there had been a conversation between Gen 1 Wayne and 
some of the serj ts , that their grievances had been men- 
tioned, and a redress of them proposed, that a part of 
them listened to them, that there was a prospect of a 
division takeing place among them, and that some reg t8 , if 
not the whole, would return, that the officers were going 
to arm themselves, the militia of two counties were as- 
sembling, and if matters were not compromised before 
they got much further they would be treated in another 
manner. His Excellency in addition to his former repre- 
sentations to Congress has written them most pointedly 
and pressingly on this occasion, and does not doubt but 
every thing in their power will be done immediately. 
Please let me hear from you as soon as possible, and if it 
sutes your convenience take fish with me to-morrow one 
o'clock, P. M. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. It is said the common suffering of the army 
were not the only ground of the mutiny, that there was 
much uneasiness on account of their inlistments, which 
they assert to have been interpreted by their officers for 
a longer term then they engaged for. 

Major General Parsons. 



152 THE IIEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 6 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — Since I had the honor of seeing 
your Excellency yesterday, I have assembled the com- 
manding officers of regiments and advised with them on 
the subject of the mutiny in the Pensylvania Line and a 
proper communication of it to the troops here. I also 
wrote General Parsons on the occasion. I* am happy to 
find that nothing at present is to be apprehended from 
any of the troops in this quarter on either side of the 
river, that many of the men treat the conduct of the 
Pensylvanias with contempt and ridicule, and seem rather 
to pride themselves in exhibiting under similar sufferings 
a more soldierly behaviour. I wish if possible they may- 
receive speedy relief and not be longer held under trials, 
which in any age or country I think would be thought 
too much for human nature long to struggle with. They 
may be easily pleased, and if their real wants only were 
supplied not a murmer would exist among them. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock of the Common- 
wealth of Massachusetts has desired me to furnish him 
with exact returns of all the non-commissioned officers 
and men belonging to that Commonwealth with their 
description, by whom inlisted, & c , to serve during the war 
in the fifteen battalions, corps of light dragoons, artillery, 
and artillery artificers, or that are in any other corps not 
belonging to that Commonwealth. 

I am takeing measures to obtain such returns from the 
regiments of infantry belonging to the Commonwealth, 
from Sheldon's light dragoons, Col Crane's reg* of artil- 
lery, and Col Baldwin's artificers, and I shall be much 
obliged to your Excellency for information, whether there 
are any men serving in any other corps which belong 
to Massachusetts, in particular in Col Armand's, and 



i 

i 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 153 

whether by any returns lodged with you their number 
can be ascertained. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 

Your Excellency's most obedient serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan 1- ? 6 th , 1781. 
7 o'clock, p.m. 

Dear General, — The enclosed this moment came to 
hand, which I beg to submit to your Excellency. This 
will be forwarded at gun firing in the morning. I detain 
the express, and wish your answer if agreable by the 
return of the bearer that Col Hull may have notice as 
early as possible. Colonel Thomas mentioned the matter 
to me in a letter yesterday, but as it did not come from 
Col Hull I took no notice of it. If the plan should be 
approved, it will probably be necessary to furnish the 
militia with some ammunition. As to burning the 
houses at Morrissania, altho they are a nest for the nefa- 
rious enemy, yet as many of them belong to persons 
very friendly to our cause and who have been obliged to 
abandon their habitations, it may be not only impolitic 
but injurious to do it. However, I will advise, as your 
Excellency may think fit to direct. I must confess I do 
not well like the militia having so much to do in the 
matter, notifying and collecting men from three regi- 
ments among whom many disaffected persons reside, and 
upon the very lines of the enemy, is very likely to give 
air of the design, and a knowledge of the design will 
tend to blow the whole. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect. 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 






154 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan 1 * 7 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have been honored with your two favors 
of the 18 th and 21 st ulto., the first enclosing the resolu- 
tion of the Honorable the General Assembly of the 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts respecting the address 
of the general officers of the New England Lines, and 
your Excellency's answer to the address of the officers 
of the Massachusetts Line, and the latter enclosing the 
resolution of the General Assembly of 25 th Nov r re- 
specting a return of the men inlisted to serve during 
the war in the regiments, & c , belonging to the Common- 
wealth. The former were communicated to the officers; 
a call for the returns was published in the orders of 
yesterday. It will probably be some days before the 
returns can be collected, as some of the corps are at a 
distance ; but as soon as they come to hand I shall do 
myself the honor of transmitting them. The fifteen 
regiments and the 16 th commanded by Colonel Henry 
Jackson have lately been incorporated into ten. The 
returns of the infantry will be made conformable, but 
will exhibit what is specified in the resolve. 

Many of the officers who drew monies for the recruit- 
ing service are gone home on the half pay list and on 
furlough, and some are here. I am confident your 
Excellency and the Honorable the Council have or will 
adopt the best and most easy mode for the settlement 
of the accounts of the officers. Such as are within the 
State, either as supernumeries or on furlough, can easily 
attend at Boston. An auditor may be appointed to ex- 
amine and report the accounts of those here who cannot 
go to Boston, if your Excellency should judge that 
proper. 

I should think myself inexcusable if I did not in this 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 155 

letter represent to you the present distressed and alarm- 
ing situation of the army, were it not that General Knox 
has been this day sent to the eastward by his Excellency 
the Commander in Chief specially for that purpose. 

With every sentiment of respect and esteem, I have 
the honor to be your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r ? 8 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
yesterday ; have instructed Lt. Col Hull conformably, 
and ordered one hundred men from the New Hampshire 
Line to reinforce him. 

I have also ordered one hundred men under the com- 
mand of a major to march this morning towards Pompton 
to cover the public stores at Ringwood. The major is 
instructed on his arrival at the most convenient and 
advantageous place for that purpose to give notice to the 
commanding officer of the Jersey Line of his being in 
that quarter, and to aid that Line if any emergency 
should render it necessary. I hope tranquility will soon 
be established in the Jersies that this detachment may 
return. 

I have written to the commanding officer at King's 
Ferry to be in the most perfect readiness for instant 
defence, and to the guard-boats to keep the most vigilant 
look-out. 

Enclosed is a letter received the last evening from Lt. 
Col Hull. It is principally respecting a set of plunderers 
whose conduct is repugnant to the laws of humanity, 
of honor and arms. I have once, some time since, repre- 



156 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

sented the matter to Governor Clinton. He detests the 
practice, but no effectual remedy* has yet been pointed 
out. As both the plunderers and the plundered are 
subjects of the State, if an officer interferes he subjects 
himself to a civil prosecution. Major Talmadge not long 
since informed that two were commenced against him. I 
beg leave to submit the matter to your Excellency to be 
laid before Governor Clinton or others as you may think 
proper. 

I forward four newspapers sent me by Col Hull. They 
contain something curious. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 10 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — Enclosed is a letter I received 
yesterday from Lt. Colo. Hull. I wrote him an answer 
that he was not to put himself or the regular troops 
under the command of a militia officer. Whether upon 
the receipt of my letter Colonel Thomas would conclude 
to act as a volluntier under Colo. Hull or not I have 
not yet learnt. The heavy rain this day will probably 
suspend the enterprise untill the weather clears up. 

In mine of the 8 th I mentioned to your Excellency that 
I had sent a detachment towards Pompton. The strength 
of the garrison every day decreasing by the discharges 
of the levies whose times of service expire, and the 
necessary and constant hard duty, call for the return 
of that detachment as soon as the state of the public 
affairs will admit. Shall be much obliged to your 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH, 157 

Excellency for information when tranquility is so restored 
in the Jersies as to admit of their recall. 

A number of soldiers who have for some time been 
prisoners with the enemy have lately been exchangd, 
have come out and joined their regiments. From their 
long confinement in prison, injured health, and absence 
from their friends they are very anxious to obtain fur- 
loughs to visit their friends ; is it expedient to indulge 
them ? the return of these soldiers from captivity renders 
a few more articles of clothing similar to those lately 
drawn necessary, will the store admit of it ? 

Major Bauman was the last winter by your Ex- 
cellency's permission to try some distances with shot 
and shells ; some particular circumstances at that time 
prevented, — he still represents the great utility of it, 
and that by ascertaining the distances from some of 
the works, a great advantage will be acquired in the 
defence of the works should the enemy ever attack 
them. 

Is it your Excellency's intention to make any altera- 
tion in the arrangment of the Massachusetts brigades 
in consequence of the late establishment of the rank 
of the regiments, or to let them remain as they are 
untill they quit their winter quarters? 

The boats that lately went up the river after flour 
have returned. They brought down 169 barrels, and 
a craft brought down 120 barrels three days since ; these 
quantities were all that could be obtained at that time. 
Col Hay wrote me that about 100 barrels would be 
ready at Esopus about this time, if boats could be sent 
up. They will be sent to-morrow. We have been this 
two days without beef cattle ; nor do I yet learn that 
any are near at hand. Yesterday and to-day the com- 
missary has been obliged to serve the troops from the 
provisions salted in bulk, the whole quantity of which 
is a mere trifle and will be gone in a few days. The 



158 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

issuing of this beef is certainly bad policy, but necessity 
compels us to do it ; half my time is spent in writing 
to agents, commissarys, and quarter masters to represent 
our wants and distresses and to urge the forwarding of 
provisions to prevent our starving. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 12 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I am just honored with yours of 
this date. I apprehend that every necessary step is 
takeing to have the detachment ready to march if they 
should be called for, but I fear we shall be rather 
straitned in obtaining the 1,150 rank and file proposed. 
The garrison will be extremely weak, if that number 
marches. I leave Lt. Col Hull with 100 men on the 
lines being apprehensive that a less number will not 
check the excursions of the enemy. The garrisons at 
King's Ferry will remain compleat, but what remains 
for the defence of these posts will be a very slender 
garrison. If the detachment march I shall be carefull to 
exercise every precaution you are pleased to point out. 

General Howe never mentioned that any thing had 
passed between him and your Excellency on the subject 
of command, and as it was his by right and he appeared 
desireous to have it, was accordingly appointed. Was it 
not for that, considering the genius of the eastern troops, 
and fondness for their own officers, I should have thought 
it more politic to have sent General Parsons for the 
foregoing reason only, but this is a delicate matter and 
I touch it with caution. If I had known that any thing 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 159 

had been said upon the subject I should most certainly 
have enlarged upon it. 

I have the honor to be, with greatest regard, dear 
General, 

Your most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 13 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — The enclosed I received from 
General Parsons yesterday afternoon ; its complection is 
very favorable. 

The order for drawing and cooking four days pro- 
visions here yesterday turned the whole conversation of 
the troops on the subject of the detachment and conjec- 
tures of its design; such as have been reported to me 
I shall relate to your Excellency. 

A woman in Colonel Greaton's reg fc was sent among 
the men to hear their conversation, returned and related 
that their sentiments were differant ; some said the 
detachment was going to quell the Pensylvanians and 
conduct them to this place, that they w r ould have no 
hand in it, as they were contending for a redress of 
greivances under which all are labouring and equally 
concerned ; others observed that their conduct was de- 
testible and that they ought to be humbled and that 
they were willing to aid in doing it. 

About six o'clock, p. m., Colonel Putnam and Lt. Col 
Newhall came in and informed me that six companies 
of his reg fc upon being called upon to turn out and fetch 
up their four days provisions refused to do it, asserting 
that they had not received their pay, that they were 
destitute of clothes, and could not go on command, and 
would not draw their provisions or march from the Point 



160 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1781. 

imtill they received their pay and clothing. Lt. CoP 
Newhall, to whom the serjeant made the report, directed 
him (the serjeant) to return and tell the men they must 
draw and cook their provisions, that it was the orders of 
their General and that his and their honor, as well as 
their duty and the public service, required it, upon which 
they drew their provisions. Colonel Putnam told me he 
would this morning pass through the barracks and address 
the men on their being called on command at this time. 

My steward who went early this morning to the store, 
upon his return came into my chamber and informed 
me that the men, many of whom were at the store, in 
conversation declared that they would not march from 
the Point, unless they were first paid and clothed, that 
they had served a year without pay, and that they 
might be considered as free men, for that they were not 
obligated to serve for nothing. 

Colonel Putnam has this minute come in ; he informs 
me that he has passed through the quarters of his reg* 
where the men were generally cooking. They appeared 
to be in good temper ; at length he came to a soldier 
remarkable for his fidelity and steadiness, is inlisted for 
the war, and has lately returned from, captivity. He 
addressed the Colonel, Sir, where is this detachment 
going ? The Colonel replyed he could not certainly say, 
that the Commander in Chief had ordered it to be held 
in readiness, from which it must be concluded to be 
necessary. The soldier replyed (and he is one detailed 
to for the command), " Order me where you will and to 
fight whom you please and I will cheerfully obey, except 
it be my brother soldier. I cannot fight him." The 
sincerity and heart felt emotion with which he spake 
this so overcame the Colonel that he was obliged immedi- 
ately to quit the room. I have repeated the orders for 
every thing to be in the most perfect readiness for an 
immediate march, and apprehend the detachment are 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 1G1 

ready whenever your Excellency shall think proper to 
order it to move ; but by the great number of discharges 
of the levies whose times are out I am doubtfull whether 
we shall be able to march the whole number proposed, 
unless the post is left very naked. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* ser*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Garrison, West Point, Jan r y 15 th , 1781. 

Dear General, —The detachment ordered to be made 
and held in readiness to march has been compleatly ready 
for this day or two, and from the general representation 
of the officers a very good temper is every where pre- 
dominent among the men ; there is but little said by 
them, but the officers are of opinion that they will cheer- 
fully obey any orders that are given. 

I mentioned in mine of the 13 th that six companies of 
Colo. Putnam's regiment had the evening before, by the 
report of a serjeant to Lt. Col Newhall, refused to draw 
their provisions ; upon an enquiry made of the quarter- 
master of the reg*, he asserts that there was no refusal 
in his hearing, and that the men drew their provisions 
with as much cheerfullness as usual. From which it is to 
be supposed that the Serjeant's report to Lt. Col Newhall 
was groundless, or formed on the slight objections of some 
men which are frequently made among themselves on all 
occasions. 

That the detachment may be in the most perfect readi- 
ness to march on the shortest notice, and to prevent their 
diminishing their provisions, they are taken off duty both 
of guards and fatigue at the Point. This stops the make- 

n 



162 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 

ing the new road, and several other necessary peices of 
business. I therefore request your Excellency's opinion 
of the probability of the detachment's being called to 
march, that if the probability is against it the men may 
be put on duty as soon as may be thought convenient. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

West Point, Jan r y 16, 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 14 th instant, to which I shall pay due attention. 

With respect to that part of your Excellency's letter 
which refers to Fishkill, I scarcly know how to express 
myself. I am ever exceedingly cautious not to invade 
the jurisdiction of others ; nither do I choose to have 
my own infringed. I did not seek the command at Fish- 
kill, but as your Excellency was pleased, and that re- 
peatedly, to declare it vested in me, it became my duty 
to exercise it. I therefore attempted to discharge the 
trust reposed in me. If I have been wrong, I stand 
ready to be corrected. If my conduct has been conso- 
nant to the established rules of discipline, I expect to be 
supported. I take the liberty to enclose coppy of my 
instructions to Col Hazen and of my orders of the 13 th . 
I have endeavoured carefully to inform myself of my 
duty. I think I know it, unless the doctrine that the 
quarter master's department is not subject to the com- 
mand of the military be true. 

In military command I conceive there must be one 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp, 189, 190. — Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 1G3 

head or Commander in Chief supreme over all depart- 
ments, the officers commanding at seperate posts subordi- 
nate to him. If the Commander in Chief has the 
command of the Q. M. G. and his department, the 
commanding officer at every post has command of those 
officers of the staff department stationed at the post for 
the purpose of supplying it, and from hence I conclude 
that if your Excellency has the command of the Q. M. G., 
Col Hazen, who is your representative at Fishkill, has the 
command of the assistant Q. M. at that post. If this is 
denied, the military can have no jurisdiction over the 
staff from the Q. M. G. to the quarter master of a brigade, 
and will not this be imperium in imperio and a two 
headed monster whose offspring must be confusion and 
disorder ? That there is a resolve of Congress empower- 
ing the deputies and assistants of the quarter master 
general to draw provisions on their own order is true, 
and without it they and the public service would suffer 
greatly, as at Danbury, Litchfield, Hartford, and many 
other places where the public service requires branches 
of the q. master's department to be stationed without 
any military officer, but can even this be supposed to 
exempt the staff department from the rules and regula- 
tions of the army or of any part of it or at any post 
where an officer commands ? If in one instance, why 
not in all ? I thought my instruction and order, altho 
simply expressed, to be founded on principals of reason 
and right. I think so still, and altho in obedience to your 
pleasure signified in your letter of yesterday, I have 
directed a suspension of the orders of the 13 th , I still 
retain my own opinion of having done my duty. In 
justice to myself and every officer in the army, to the 
principals of discipline and military propriety, I cannot 
myself rescind what I have so done, and it is a matter in 
which, if I have acted with propriety, your Excellency's 
command is equally concerned, and I now request your 



164 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

opinion whether my conduct has in this particular been 
risfht or wrong. 

I am this moment honored with yours of this date. A 
number of boats [torn] returned here the last even [torn] 
flour. They will be sent up river again ; but it would be 
much better and less fatigueing to the men to bring it 
from a distance in sail craft. The men are exceedingly 
fatigued when they return. 

The public service is much injured on account of the 
want of paper, the muster rolls, pay rolls, and reports 
cannot be made out for want of it, and I am this day told 
that the officers have been obliged to cut the leaves out 
of their company books untill few are left. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

West Point, Jan^ 17 th , 1781. 

Sir, — This will be presented by Lt. Colonel Command' 
Brooks of the Massachusetts Line, an active and good 
officer. He informs me he has not the honor of being 
known to your Excellency. As he is much attached to 
you I beg leave to recommend him to your notice and 
civilities. Colonel Brooks will be able to give your 
Excellency any information you may wish to have re- 
specting the situation of things here. 

The revolters of the Pensylvania Line have given up 
the spies who were sent from the enemy to them. They 
were executed the last week. One was a British serjeant ; 
the other a M r Ogden, an inhabitant of New Jersey. 
Matters are in a train for an accommodation with the 
revolters, without coming to extremities. This affair 
will, I fear, have a baneful influance on the future dis- 



1781.] DAVID HUMPHKYS. 165 

cipline of our army. All the New England Lines still 
exhibit a patience and soldierly behaviour which does 
them great honor, but it is puting every thing extremely 
to the hazard to let them remain even a day under their 
present severe trials. Our present prospects of provisions 
are very gloomy ; without speedy relief we shall in a 
few days be reduced to extreme want. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



DAVID HUMPHRYS* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Head Quarters, 10 o'clock, p. m. 
Jan r y 21 st , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — His Excellency has just heard of the 
revolt of the Jersey troops, and directs me to inform you 
that he is determined at all hazards to put a stop to such 
proceedings, which must otherwise prove the inevitable 
disolution of the army. He requests therefore you will 
be pleased to order a detachment to be made out from 
the garrison and other troops under your command, of 
five or six hundred of the most robust and best cloathed 
men, properly officered and provided for the purpose. 
The General expects the detachment will be immediately 
compleated and equipped. And altho it should leave the 
posts very weak, he thinks there will be no risque, as the 

* David Humphrys, or Humphreys, as he spelled his name later in life, was born in 
Derby, Conn., July 10, 1752, graduated at Yale College in 1771, and died in New Haven 
Feb. 21, 1818. After graduating he taught school for a time, and in the summer of 1776 
he joined the American army, serving down to the end of the war. For the last two years 
and a half he was an aid de camp to Washington. In 1784 he was appointed by Congress 
Secretary of the Commissioners for negotiating treaties of commerce with foreign powers. 
In 1791 he was appointed minister to Portugal. From this post he was transferred to 
Spain, where he remained until 1801. After his return to America he engaged in various 
business operations. In his own time he had a considerable reputation as a poet, and he 
also published numerous pamphlets. See Dexter's Yale Biographies, third series, pp. 
414-420; Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, pp. 312, 313. — Eds. 



166 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

command of Major General Parsons will be returned be- 
fore the enemy can take any advantage of the movement. 
His Excellency will be at the Point in the morning. 
I have the honor to be, dear Sir, 

Your most obed* and very hble. servant. 

D. Humphrys, A. D. Camp. 

Major Gen. Heath. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

West Point, Jan'y 22 nd , 1781. 

Sir, — The Hon ble the General Assembly of the State 
of Massachusetts on the 30 th Sep tr , 1779, among other 
tilings resolved, " That a bounty of 300 dollars in addi- 
tion to the bounty and subsistance money allowed by 
Congress be paid to each non-commissioned officer and 
soldier who has or shall inlist as one of this State's quota 
of the continental army during the continuance of the 
present war between the United States of America and 
Great Britain," and soon after sent a committee to the 
army with a sum of money for the purpose. On the 
arrival of the committee at this place many of the officers 
advised the paying the 300 dollars first to the men w 7 ho 
had enlisted. On account of the insufficiency of the 
monies, and some other considerations, I objected to 
that mode and advised that the money should be solely 
applied in paying the bounties to those who might thereby 
be induced to reinlist. When monies arrived a second 
time, the reinlistments having been very successfull, I 
still advised the money's being appropriated to same pur- 
pose only. On the arrival of the third sum, the spirit 
for reinlistino; having; a little abated, and the old soldiers 
growing very uneasy at not receiveing their 300 dollars, 
I directed the officers to pay them 100 dollars each, and 
to assure them the State would as soon as possible fulfill 
their promise. The officers accordingly paid to some 100 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATn. 1G7 

dollars, to others 200, and I believe to some the 300, as 
will appear upon the settlement of their accounts. Con-, 
sidering that the soldier builds much on the fulfillment 
of every promise which is made him, and that his feel- 
ings are wounded and the service injured where they are 
procrastinated, on the 15 th of May last in a letter I had 
the honor to address to the General Assembly I advised 
the paying as soon as possible what remained due of the 
300 dollars, which I then observed would not require a 
large sum in addition to what the officers had received. 
I did not know but that it had been done untill soon after 
my arrival here I was informed that it was not. The men 
have now grown exceedingly uneasy about it, and are 
applying to know why they are kept out of it. Their 
uneasiness will naturly encrease when they hear of the 
large bounties which are given to those who are now 
inlisting, when they reflect on the great disparity of what 
they received or are to receive, and that a part of the 
former has been deducted on the settlement of their 
accounts, and the latter withheld from them. If the 
promise to a soldier is not most punctually fulfilled, it 
were better never to have made it. Permit me, there- 
fore, to request that what yet remains due of the 300 
dollars may be paid as speedily as possible. The suffer- 
ings of the army are only parrelleled by their patience. 
After all that can be done for your army, there will be 
many sufferings which must be borne, but the principals 
of humanity, policy, and justice dictate that they be 
lessened as much as possible. 

With every sentiment of respect and esteem, I have 
the honor to be 

Your Excellency's most obed* servant. 

W. Heath, M. General 

P. S. Since writing the above information is received 
that the Jersey Line revolted the day before yesterday. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



168 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO COMTE DE ROCHAMBEAU. 

West Point, Jan'* 29 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I was duly honored with yours of 
the 22 nd ult°. 

I hope you have passed an agreable winter at Rhode 
Island thus far in health and plenty. We have been 
several times cheered in this dreary world by the friendly 
visits of some of the gentlemen of your army. 

You must long agoe have heard of the revolt of the 
Pensylvania Line and probably since of the Jersey Line ; 
both have been quieted. 

On the 22 nd instant we made an attempt on Col De- 
lancy's corps at Morrissania. The enterprise was well 
conducted and succeeded ; besides a number of the enemy 
who were killed, upwards of fifty were taken prisoners. 
The pontoon bridge over Harlem River under the fire of 
the enemy's cannon at Laurel Hill near Fort Washington 
was cut away, all the enemy's hutts burnt and about one 
hundred head of cattle brought off. The troops returned 
here yesterday. They have performed out and returning 
about one hundred miles march ; we had one subaltern, 
one drum, and ten privates killed ; one captain, one Ser- 
jeant, and eleven privates wounded. 

By the last accounts from the southward Arnold was 
in Virginia, had taken possession of Williamsburgh, where 
he will doubtless plunder large quantities of tobacco ; 
plunder is his darling object. 

As Major Lyman will have the honor of delivering 
this to your Excellency, he will be able to give any par- 
ticulars you may wish to know respecting our situation, & c . 

With the most inviolable attachment, I have the honor 
to be, my dear General, 

Your most obedient serv* 

W. Heath. 

General Rociiambeau. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 169 



WILLIAM HEATH TO CALEB DAVIS * 

West Point, Feb'* 2 nd , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — The day before yesterday I was honored 
with yours of the 30 th Decem r . It has been a long time 
on the road. 

I am very happy to hear that money may soon be 
expected for the releif of your troops. The situation of 
the army I dare say has been fully represented to the 
General Assembly before this time by General Knox. I 
will rest in hopes that we shall soon experiance the salu- 
tary effects of the doings of the Assembly upon it. The 
temper and conduct of all the eastern troops does them 
the greatest honor ; under similar or greater sufferings 
than others they exhibit the most soldierly behaviour. 
The detachment that was sent to quell the mutineers of 
the Jersey Line did it effectually. Two of the ring- 
leaders were executed on the spot, and the rest forced to 
an unconditional submission. This was done at the very 
time when we were executing an enterprise on the enemy 
at Morrissania, which succeeded. Movements more for- 
tunate could not have happened, for the enemy w 7 ere 
flattering themselves that the New England troops would 
follow the example of the others and that a revolt would 
become general. They have been convinced that we 
had force and uninimity sufficient to strike the in a blow 
under the muzzels of their cannon, and to restore tran- 
quility in the Jersies, and that their low attempts of 
bribery and seduction have been rewarded by hanging 
their messengers. 

Five hundred and thirty coats is all your Line have 
received this year ; they have received a number of baize 

* Caleb Davis was a prominent and influential' citizen of Boston, a deacon of the Hollis 
Street Church, first Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives under the 
Constitution, and a Presidential Elector. — Eds. 



170 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

overalls and vests too slimsey to wear long. Col Smith 
this moment from Springfield informs me that fifty hogs- 
heds of woollen clothing was at Springfield and had been 
there near a month. This probably is the clothing you 
mention to have been some time since sent on from 
Boston. 

I thank you, my dear Sir, for your sympathy under my 
embarrassed situation. It has been truly so ; never in my 
life did I endure more than I have done of late. I find 
it impairing my constitution fast. This and the situation 
of my family, from whom I have been too long absent for 
their interest, will compel me to retire from the army, but 
it will be offering violence to my feelings when I do it. 

I hope the Mars will arrive safe and well laden with 
clothing ; it is much wanted by both officers and sol- 
diers. I wish there might be particular care taken to 
have the clothing well made. I think it would be well for 
some person to inspect it before it is sent on, in particular 
the shoes ; there is the greatest imposition in this article, 
they are generally made too small, are of bad leather, and 
badly made, consequently last but a few days. 

I shall trouble you with a line whenever opportunity 
offers, and shall be happy in being honored with a return 
from you. I want to ask you a thousand questions. I 
fear you are in some danger of falling into another 
extreme with respect to your taxes ; having too long 
omitted taxing, I fear you will now tax too much. You 
are fully sensible that mtich address is necessary, to con- 
vince mankind that there is a necessity for you to put 
your hands into their pockets to take their money, or 
induce them to do it themselves. If this is not attended 
to and the taxes are greater than the ability of the bulk 
of the people can bear you are in danger of breaking 
their spirits ; the consequences are obvious. 

Please present my compliments to M rs Davis and family, 
and all friends in your circle. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 171 

With every sentiment of respect and esteem, I have 
the honor to be, my clear Sir, 

Yonr obedient servant. W. Heath. 

Ilon ble Caleb Davis, Esq r . 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Feb'* 7 th 1781. 

Dear General, — The enclosed was handed to me by 
Lt. Col Command 1 Sprout. From what I can learn the 
case is briefly this. Cap* Smart was a captain in and pay- 
master to the 13 th Massachusetts reg*, was in a bad state 
of health and desired on that account to quit the service. 
He is so good an'officer that the reg* were loath to loose 
him and advised him to get leave to retire for the re- 
covery of his health, which he did ; but has not been so 
fortunate as to recover it, and is determined to resign his 
commission. He is not able to come on to settle his 
accounts and by reason of his not doing it and geting a 
discharge, the promotion of a captain is prevented, which 
gives uneasiness to those whose right it is to receive 
promotion. To avoid the inconvenience, and to prevent 
the continuation or increase of uneasiness, Lt. Col Sprout 
and Major Porter will give bonds for the settlement of 
Cap* Smart's acco ts , if, on that condition it should be 
thought admissible to discharge him previous to the set- 
tlement of his acco ts , which is submitted for your Excel- 
lency's determination. 

Enclosed also is a petition from Serjeant James Lurvey, 
of Col Putnam's regiment, who has for this two or three 
years past been coxen of the commanding officer's barge 
at this post, and was compelled by Arnold to convey him 
on board the Vulture sloop of war at the time that per- 
fidious officer went to the enemy.f The conduct of 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 194, 195. — Eds. 
t For some account of James Lurvey, see 2 Proc, Mass Hist. Soc, vol. xii. pp. 
346-348. — Eds. 



172 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Lurvey at that time is fully known to your Excellency. 
He informs me that in the month of Novem r last he pre- 
sented a petition to you, and had incouragement from 
one of your aids de camp that somthing should be done 
for him, either an indulgence to serve in the horse for a 
certain time or some other consideration. He now wishes 
that he may be allowed to procure a man to take his 
place, or as the procurement of a man would require all 
the earnings of his almost six years service, would serve 
cheerfully for the term of one year longer, if at the 
expiration of that time, you would please to grant him a 
discharge. As he is a man of strict integrity, the most 
unshaken bravery, and warmest attachment to his coun- 
try, I am compelled to lay his petition before your Ex- 
cellency for such decision as you may think proper. 

There are many vacancies for ensigns in the Masschu- 
setts Line ; are they to be filled, and in such case what 
mode is to be observed in doing it ? 

There is a considerable number of prisoners in the 
provost at Fishkill ; if we are to judge from past expe- 
rience, it is not a place of the greatest security, and from 
the nature of the adjacent country and nearness of the 
enemies' posts prisoners who at any time escape are rarely 
retaken. It therefore seems expedient if any advantage 
is to be derived from the prisoners taken, if sent to that 
place, that they be either soon exchanged, removed far- 
ther, or a better place of security be provided. I have 
frequently given orders for the repairs of the provost 
and the better securing it, but have been repeatedly in- 
formed that the construction of it forbids it being ren- 
dered properly secure. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATH. 173 

SAMUEL H. PARSONS TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Connec tt Hutts, 7 h Feby, 1781. 

Dear General, — I thank you for the newspaper and 
a letter from Nathan Frink to you. Should I suffer my 
feelings to be wounded by the calumniating tongue of 
every reptile who has crept into the enemy's band of 
thieves, I should live an unhappy life and should con- 
ceive myself paying a tribute to an importance of char- 
acter which they never posses'd. No answer therefore 
is the best reply to them. 

We capturd a negro slave belonging to Nathan Frink 
in our late excursion to Morisania, as much his property 
as his horse or his sword, and he has been sold by Q r 
Master Day under the direction of Col Hull for the 
benefit of the detachment. I conceive the case as essen- 
tially differs from the case of an officer's servant, as 
property in a horse differs from the interest a man has 
in his day labourer. 

I am, d r S r , y r obed* serv*. 

Sam l H. Parsons. 

P. S. Sam 1 Brown mentiond by Frink is parol'd for 
three months, on the sollicitation of our friends and was 
at home before Frink wrote you. 

S. P. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, Feb r y 8 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — 1 have been honored with yours of 
the 5 th instant respecting the staff department. Am 
happy to find the measures I had adopted have in so many 
instances received your approbation as expressed in 
your sentiments. Am sorry that in one instance I should 
be so unfortunate as to be thought erronious by your 



174 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Excellency ; and as it is not only a laudable wish, but an 
incumbant duty, to vindicate our conduct and intentions 
when they are thought reprehensible, in a proper manner, I 
pray you will be pleased to allow me to observe that my 
order of the 13 th Jan ry was not issued upon any diffidence 
in the integrity or veracity of the staff department, nor 
was it my design to deprive them of any powers granted to 
them of drawing orders on their own returns, nither did 
I delegate to Colonel Hazen a power to alter or refuse 
countersigning any order thus presented. My motive 
was nearly tantimount to the idea expressed in the last 
paragraph of your letter, in case upon investigation the 
power of giving orders for provisions, & c , should appear 
too much diffused, and as Col Hazen's quarters were 
situated in the midst of the several departments, and he 
had informed me he should have no objection to the 
trouble that would be naturly occasioned thereby. My 
order was issued solely with a view to regularity, that if 
there should be a scantiness of provisions or stores on 
hand, as was at that time unfortunately the case, there 
might be an equal issue to the several departments and 
troops at the post, which would not probably be the case 
if the power of drawing was vested in many, as he who 
first heard of the arrival of provisions might send and 
draw the greater proportion, altho not more than en- 
ti tuled to, than the quantity in store would afford to 
others, which might be represented if a knowledge of 
all the draughts passed through one hand. My sole mo- 
tive has been to seek the public good, and I pray you 
will be assured that such it will still be, and in the present 
case as nearly conformable to your pleasure signified in 
your letter as I can pursue it. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 175 

WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

West Point, Feb'y 13 th , 1781. 

Sm, — I have the pleasure of acquainting you that we 
have this moment received an account from the southward 
that may be depended on, viz 1 , that on the 17 th til to. an 
action happened near Peeclee between a body of Ameri- 
can troops under the command of General Morgan and 
about one thousand of the enemy under the command of 
Lt. Col° Tarlton. The enemy were totally defeated, 
and pursued upwards of twenty miles. Our loss was in- 
considerable, not more than 12 killed and 60 wounded, 
The enemy had ten commissioned officers and one 
hundred rank and file killed, and two hundred wounded, 
twenty nine officers and 500 rank and file taken 
prisoners. Two pieces of artillery, 2 standards, 800 
muskets, one traveling forge, 35 baggage waggons, 70 
negros, 100 dragoon horses, with all their music are 
trophies of victory. This is a most fortunate circum- 
stance at this time, and on which I most sincerely 
congratulate you. 

I have the honor to be, &c. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. It is said not more than 800 Americans were 
en^a^ed. 

Governor Hancock : a coppy to the Speaker. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO HUGH MAXWELL.* 

West Point, Feb r y 15 th , 1781. 

Deae Sir, — Your favors of the 12 th and 14 th with the 
newspapers came duly to hand, for which I thank you. 

* Hugh Maxwell was born in Minterburn, Ireland, April 27, 1753, in which year his 
father came to America and settled on a farm in Bedford, Mass. He was wounded at the 
battle of Bunker Hill, and afterward served throughout the war. He died on a return 
voyage from the West Indies Oct. 14, 179ft. See Bugbee's Annals of the Mass. Society of 
the Cincinnati, p. 354. — Eds. 



176 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

You were right with respect to the exchange of prisoners; 
it is the duty of the commissary of prisoners to negotiate 
exchanges. 

As Cap* Pritchard's detachment is diminished, his situa- 
tion requires more precaution. I am glad to find you 
have inculcated on him the necessity of it, and wish you 
to continue to do it. Situated as he is, an officer must 
depend more on the vigilance, precaution, and address 
of his officers and men than on their force ; he may 
evade and deceive the enemy when the debility of hi3 
detachments may forbid his fighting them. 

General Warner and Colo. Ashley arrived yesterday 
from Massachusetts with a sum of hard money for the 
troops of your State. I congratulate you on the good 
news from the southward, which may be depended on, 
vizt., that on the 17 th of Jan 1 * L* Col Tarlton, the famous 
British partizan, attacked General Morgan who commands 
the light troops of Gen 1 Green's army between Broad 
River and the Cowpens in Carolina. Tarlton attacked 
with great impetuosity, but was repulsed, totally routed, 
and pursued upwards of 20 miles. The enemy had ten 
officers and upwards of 100 rank and file killed, and 200 
wounded, 29 officers and 500 men taken prisoners, with 
2 field peices, 2 standards, 800 muskets, 35 waggons, one 
traveling forge, 100 dragoon horses, all their music, 
& c . This will give a happy turn to our affairs in the 
South. 

Please endeavour to collect all the news and all the 
papers you can from below. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, your obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Major Maxwell. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 177 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, Feb 1 * 28 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I am honored with yours of yester- 
day, am happy to hear that the prospect of a supply of 
provisions is so favorable. The fatigue men and if pos- 
sible six carpenters shall be sent the day after tomorrow 
to work on the logs above Newburgh. 

I some days since reduced the troops on the lines from 
two to one hundred rank and file, and in consequence of 
your pleasure signified in yours of the 23 rd I gave orders 
for reducing them to fifty rank and file. I have this day 
had a committee from the inhabitants below representing 
the great danger to which they must be exposed in case 
the detachment is reduced to 50 men, as in such case 
Col Delancy will venture with his corps to ravage 
Crompond and its vicinity at present full of cattle, grain, 
& c . This will oblige the inhabitants friendly to our cause 
to remove further back, consequently the traveling by 
King's Ferry will become unsafe. They request that 
if after all that is said -the detachment must be reduced 
to 50 men that the 100 may remain untill they can 
address the Legislature now sitting at Albany to raise 
a body of militia for their defence. I think Major Max- 
well may remain where he is with 100 men without any 
hazard to these posts, as he is at all times ready to move 
and can reach this place as soon or sooner than the 
enemy by land, or in case they come by water before 
they can pass the points and disembarke. It will cover 
the country, give protection, quiet to the inhabitants and 
their property, and render traveling safe by King's Ferry, 
and save the expense of raising a corps of militia. If 
your Excellency approves of it, he shall remain ; if not, 
the detachment shall be reduced to 50 rank and file. 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 202. — Eds. 

12 



178 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Major Maxwell has orders in case the enemy come up 
in force, either by land or water, to repair to this place 
with all possible dispatch with his whole detachment. 

Justice Honeywell informs me that a man came up 
from Philips's the last night who reports that there is 
great confusion in New York, both among the soldiery 
and inhabitants, that it was said six regiments w T ere to 
embark e last Thursday, their destination not known, that 
it was reported in the city that a fleet of French mer- 
chantmen had arrived in Chesapeak, but that they dared 
not go up on account of Arnold's being above, but the 
consternation and confusion indicated something more 
formidable then merchantmen, that it was said the Hes- 
sians were to do the duty on the lines at Kingsbridge, 
all Delancy's corps have been called into Morrisania, & c . 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. We have several soldiers taken down with the 
small pox ; they will be removed and all possible care 
taken to prevent a spread of the infection. Two or 
three persons who are supposed to have taken it I 
have permitted to be inoculated, the latter are of the 
Connecticut Line. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, March 2 nd , 1781. 

Mr dear General, — The enclosed w r as put into my 
hand the last evening, altho the field officers who were 
appointed to command the detachment which march'd 
on the 19 th ulto. were appointed in my orders, yet as they 
were those your Excellency was pleased to name in your 
letter of the 17 th I am induced to communicate the en- 



1781.] WILLIAM HULL. 179 

closed to you. I have learnt that the officers of the 
other Lines have thought themselves equally hurt ; as 
the affair is laid open I cannot smother my own feelings 
which have been exceedingly wounded under some con- 
siderations on this occasion. I never will admit an idea 
to enter my breast that it is possible for any officer in 
the army, especially a foreigner, to have the interest or 
the honor of my Country more at heart than I have, and 
if the conduct of my General in any instance should dis- 
cover that he places less confidence in me, it cannot fail 
to make a painfull impression. 

I have the honor to be, with the most inviolable at- 
tachment, and perfect respect, 

Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HULL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

New Town, March 8 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — A full persuasion that you would 
wish to be made acquainted with the situation of affairs 
in the State induces me to think that this letter will not 
be unacceptable. Altho' very great exertions have been 
made and are still making by the several towns to re- 
cruit the proportion of men assigned them, yet I am 
sorry to inform you that they have not been attended with 
better success. From fifty to a hundred pounds hard 
money is offered as a bounty, and few are found to en- 
gage even for so ample a consideration. Not more than 
a quarter part of this State's quota, I am persuaded, is 
now engaged. The six and nine months service is the 
cause of our present embarrasments, and those men who 
design to be soldiers are now waiting for as large a bounty 
for six months as is offered for three years. Could they 
once be persuaded that this would not be the case, they 



180 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

would, I think, immediately engage. Not only gover- 
ment but the people at large appear to see the necessity 
of an army, and I flatter myself will use every means to 
obtain it. On the arrival of the 1 st of March not a farthing 
of money was in the treasury, to discharge the first de- 
preciation note. The Court has since made the first, if 
in the hands of the officer or soldier to whom it was 
given, receivable for the confiscated estates which are to 
be sold in the course of a few days. This will make it, 
I think, as good as gold and silver. Yesterday the Judges 
of the Superior Court determined the value of the note, 
but it is not as yet published. The articles on which 
they are founded are at least twenty five p r cent, higher 
than they were fixed in the Monopoly Act. 

In future, I hope, matters will be in a better train. 
They are adopting method and system. They have calcu- 
lated the expenses of the year in specie, which amounts 
to a little more than nine hundred thousand pounds, and 
have pointed out the ways and means of discharging it, 
(viz), — by a loan, by sales of the confiscated estates, by 
duties on trade, by a lottery, and taxes on poles and es- 
tates. Exclusive of six p r cent interest, a bounty of four 
p r cent is given for all money lent the public. The whole 
debt of the State is to be consolidated and placed on the 
same footing, and the interest to be punctually paid. 

Gen 1 Lincoln has appointed me one of a committee to ex- 
amine the different magazines in the State, and report their 
situation. This service will necessarily take up so much 
time that I fear I shall not arrive by the first of April ; if 
I should not, I hope this will be a sufficient apology. 

Last evening I had the honor of calling at your house, 
and am happy to inform you that M rs Heath and family 
are well. 

I am, Sir, with the highest respect, 

Your most obed* serv*. W M Hull. 

Honb le Major Gen 1 Heath. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATH. 181 



WILLIAM HEATH TO CALEB DAVIS. 

Head Quarters, West Point, March 16 th , 1781. 

My dear Sir, — A few recruits from your Common- 
wealth have arrived. I am exceedingly sorry to find 
some of them totally unfit for service, men who are rup- 
tured, infirm, old, negros, and some children among the 
few that have arrived. When enormous bounties are 
given it is a pity that the men are not such as are 
capable of enduring those hardships which ought [to] 
be borne by the soldier without his being sent to the 
hospital on every slight cold he takes, and after remain- 
ing there some time be transferred to the corps of invalids 
or discharged. 

I observe by the public papers that the Mars has ar- 
rived. I fear that she has not brought that ample supply 
of clothing for the army which has been wished for. I 
assure you, my dear Sir, that without some relief your 
officers will very soon be so destitute both for clothes and 
money as to be unable to appear in company. 

The fleet and troops which sailed from New York the 
last week returned last Sunday. It is reported that they 
received intelligence that the traitor Arnold and all his 
troops were taken prisoners which caused their return. 
Be that as it may, such I believe is or will soon be his 
fate. The enemy are certainly in great confusion and 
consternation at New York. 

A party came out last Monday morning on the Jersey 
side of the Hudson, and advanced within about three 
miles of our block house at Dobbs' Ferry. The militia 
turning out with their usual spirit attacked, repulsed, and 
pursued them untill they retook all the cattle and plunder 
that had been taken except two horses. 

I hope the exertions of this campaign will with the 
smiles of Heaven compleat our warfare. None can more 



182 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

ardently wish it than I do. Compliments to M 1 * 8 Davis, 
family, and all friends. 

With the highest sentiments of respect and esteem, I 
have the honor to be, my dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Hon. Caleb Davis, Esq re . 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON. 

Head Quarters, West Point, March 17 th , 1781. 

Sir, — The unbounded licentiousness of a number of 
persons who lurk about the lines is become so intollera- 
ble that duty to my country as well as a regard to the 
honor of arms obliges me to make a representation to 
your Excellency. These people, some of whom stile 
themselves refugees, and others who at stated times col- 
lect from the country, and among them some, I am in- 
formed, who were deserters from the enemy, proceed 
below the lines by routes where they evade our guards, 
and there insult, whip, beat, and at some times almost 
hang till dead the inhabitants untill they distort from 
them their mony, & c . This has of late driven a very 
considerable number to join the enemy for protection 
and even to take up arms, and is likely to drive away 
many more if not checked. Indeed, the wanton, plun- 
dering spirit which now prevails will make more re- 
cruits for the enemy than all their recruiting officers 
put together. It will beside contaminate the morals of 
the whole adjacent country, will produce a disposition 
and thirst to plunder all ages, sexes, and denominations, 
marked with such stains of abuse as will be a disgrace 
to our country and our arms. I know your Excellency 
detests such practises, and I flatter myself the greater 
part of the good people of the State of New York de- 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 183 

test them also ; but I fear there are some few who do not 
rebuke if they disaprove them. I wish there may not 
be some who encourage them. If this is not unjust, is 
it not exceedingly impolitic? To your Excellency's 
decision I beg leave to submit it for such remedy as you 
may think proper. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Gov r Clinton. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

West Point, March 23 rd , 1781. 
9 o'clock, p. m. 

Dear General, — I have just received intelligence 
from the water guard which I believe may be fully 
depended on, that the fleet of transports having the 
troops on board sailed from New York on Wednesday 
morning last, the 21 st instant, the same number that had 
put to sea before and returned, having been chased in by 
the French fleet. Sir Henry Clinton is gone in the fleet, 
report says to the southward. 

General Kniphausen commands in New York at present, 
but it is said he goes for Europe the next month. 

The same morning that the fleet sailed (viz* 21 st ) two 
men came out of New York by the way of Kingsbridge ; 
they are charged with dispatches for Quebec, and are to 
proceed by a secret route. One of the men is a little 
rising of 5 feet, short black curled hair, light blew coat, 
about 40 years of age ; the other is about 5 feet 8 or nine 
inches, light long hair, about 25 years of age, wears a 
brown coat. They are to proceed on foot, they cannot 
yet have got far, but it is almost impossible to know where 
to intercept them. 

There is now in Spiting devil Creeck 24 flat boats, part 



184 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

of which have been there about a week past, the rest were 
brought there but a few days since. A corps called the 
New Levies (or Arnold's Corps) are lying near Fort 
Washington, said to be ready to man the boats, & c . A 
frigate of 30 guns lies off Greenwich, and it is said a 
galley is fiting for service. 

I am informed that a man by the name of John Austin, 
who has for some time given intelligence, and such as has 
been authentic, is suspected by the enemy and this day 
came off with our boats. He wishes to go to Morristown 
for a short time, he saies he is known to your Excellency, 
and the last summer had a pass from you to go to the 
same place. I wish to be informed if your Excellency 
has any knowledge of him, and your opinion whether to 
grant him the indulgence requested. I would request 
an answer to this by the return of the express, that I 
may give the man an answer ; he is now with the guard 
boats. This should be forwarded this evening, but it [is] 
so extremely dark that it is almost impossible; it shall be 
sent at day light, with some late York papers. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, March 26 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — As justice is undoubtedly a duty 
we owe to ourselves as well as our country, and to which 
I think the officers at present serving in the army have 
a call to pay some attention, I am induced to trouble 
your Excellency with this, and assure myself your just 
way of thinking will give it that consideration which it 
deserves. 



1781.] WILLTAM IIEATII. 185 

My journey from Khode Island to this place the last 
Oct r was attended with expence, to the reimbursement of 
which, or to my rations during the time I drew nothing 
from the public stores, common justice seems to intitle 
me ; with either I shall be satisfied. Before Major 
General Greene's departure from this place he informed 
me it was a post attended with an unavoidable expence 
(as I had by experiance found before without any con- 
sideration) that it was his design to render it as moderate 
as possible ; when he had so done he expected a reim- 
bursement, and advised me to pursue the same mode of 
conduct and keep an account of extra expences for the 
purpose. This I did untill your Excellency's arrival at 
New Windsor in the month of Dec r , and I cannot but 
flatter myself you will judge a reimbursment reasonable. 
Since that time I have found this post to continue not 
only a very busy and fatigueing one (for if a public 
officer can be a slave I have this winter been one) but 
\ery expensive also. If our military establishment is 
such that in a post like this the commanding officer can 
have no allowance or consideration more than one of the 
same rank who commands a single brigade or division, 
it must be submitted to ; but the latter seems to be the 
most fortunate. If I am fairly entitled to any consider- 
ation in the foregoing instances, I cannot but wish to 
have it ; if I am not, shall chearfully submit to that of 
which if just I have no right to complain. 

At the commencement of the last campaign I was in 
hopes it would be the last, and that at the close, if I 
lived to see it, I might return to the privat walks of life 
with honor and satisfaction ; finding my expectations dis- 
apointed, I was at uncertainty whether to retire from ser- 
vice to pay some attention to my domestic affairs which 
have long and loudly claimd it, or apply for leave to visit 
my family to put my affairs in a temporary train and 
prepare myself for another campaign. The then dis- 






186 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

tresses and uneasiness of the troops forbid my applying 
for either ; your Excellency's late absence continued 
the objection. It is now almost ten months since I 
came out, if I cannot be absent a short time now the 
campaign will soon open and it will be inadmissible 
untill the next winter. If the service would admit of 
my being absent for a short time, between this and the 
opening of the campaign, I wish it. If any movements 
of the enemy, plan or intention of your Excellency's, 
forbid it, I must wave it. I never will while in the 
service ask leave of absence for the sake of pleasure or 
amusement. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

W^est Point, March 29 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — The distressed condition of the New 
York reg* under the command of Col Van Schaick on 
account of their great arrears of pay (sixteen months) 
and the uneasiness consequent thereon is encreased by 
the consideration that the troops .of the other States 
have lately received money while they get none, their 
officers much perplexed and embarrassed and know not 
what to say or do. I promised the colonel yesterday 
that I would represent their case to your Excellency, 
which I beg leave now to do. If a few months pay can 
be procured for them, either from Congress or their own 
State, it will releive their distresses, and thereby promote 
the public service. Without it there is every reason to 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Plist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 203, 204. —Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 187 

fear that desertions will take place, — indeed five or six 
have lately deserted from the lines ; probably are gone 
to the enemy, which has obliged me to remove those 
troops entirely from the lines. 

Our stock of provisions of all sorts instead of encreas- 
ing diminishes. I have lately urged on the several com- 
missarys and quarter masters the necessity of pushing on 
the stores. A word from your Excellency may be more 
efficacious. 

I am informed that Major General Parsons is very sick 
of a bilious feaver at Reading. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, March 30 th , 1781. 

Beak General, — I am honored witli yours of this 
date ; shall communicate to the officers of the New 
York reg* the care your Excellency has been pleased 
to take for the relief of the reg*, which I hope will be 
effectual. 

I thank your Excellency for your opinion respecting 
my expences on my journey to this place the last fall ; 
am sorry that a remedy in the case of expences here 
does not rest with you, and must request that as the 
common guardian of the army you will be pleased to 
make such representation to the Hon bl the Congress as 
you may think the case deserves, and that what may be 
done should have a retrospect to the winter past, which 
on many accounts has been attended with peculiar cir- 
cumstances. It is a post of sufficient burden for any 
officer without the addition of extra expence. 



188 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

The very favorable manner in which your Excellency 
is pleased to rate my services I feel most sensibly. It 
will animate me to strive to merit your future approba- 
tion. I can only wish for abilities equal to my desire to 
render more essential services, but it is a painfull consid- 
eration to me that the present situation of affairs are such 
as forbid me that short relaxation from business which 
local circumstances, and a winter's close attention of 
mind, seem to point out as indispensibly necessary for 
health, as well as to prepare to pass the approaching 
campaign with decency of appearance, comfort, and con- 
venience to myself, and to afford some advice to those 
whose tender years require it, and on whose prosperity 
my future happiness in life much depend. I ever repro- 
bate the very idea of long furloughs or absence from 
duty. Six years' steady devotedness to the service of 
my country in arms and under many discouragements, I 
trust, have sufficiently evidenced my attachment to her 
cause, but if her service requires her votaries to relinquish 
every attention to, or concern for, dearest connections, 
it is a trial too severe for my breast ; for I am ready to 
confess that my patriotism cannot, and because I think it 
ought not, erase from my bosom affection and some 
attention to my friends, between whom and my country 
I have, as their right, divided the warmest corner of my 
heart. I shall, however, endeavour to exercise that 
phylosophy which is in part the characteristick of the 
officer. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc ser*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 189 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, April 14 th , 1781. 
9 o'clock, p. m. 

Dear General, — I have just received the enclosed 
from Cap* Pray, by which it seems the fleet has returned 
from the southward, but whether with or without troops 
does not yet appear. There certainly are several move- 
ments which require critical observation. Simpson, the 
deserter (or whatever he may be) whom I sent up this 
afternoon, saies a large number of four and two horse 
waggons had been brought from Long Island to West 
Chester, as was said for a grand forage, their numbers 
being upwards of one hundred ; by Cap* Pray's letter 
the militia of Westchester county have been called in for 
some purpose, and, if his information is true, the 42 nd 
reg* at least has returned to New York. The collecting 
of forage may be a step necessary preparatory to the 
embarkation, especially if the 17 th dragoons are to em- 
barke, and the waggons may be designed for no other 
purpose, or they may have another object. I have 
cautioned Col Greene and Cap* Pray, if possible, to 
develop their motions and designs, to guard against a 
surprise, and to give me the earliest intelligence they 
obtain. By the Gazette extraordinary it seems the flames 
of war are likely to spread, if the accounts are to be 
credited. 

I wish the musket carteredges may be ordered down as 
soon as possible, and give me provisions are at present my 
only requests. 

* I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient ser*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



190 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, April 14 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I was the last evening honored with 
yours of the 12 th ; am happy to hear your Excellency 
has thought fit to take the several measures mentioned 
in your letter to bring forward the provisions. It is an 
object about which I am at present most concerned, as 
it is certainly the most threatning circumstance we have 
to encounter. If relief is seasonably and effectually 
afforded I think we have little to fear from Sir Henry 
Clinton in this quarter, be his intentions what they may. 
It would be a very easy manoeuvre for him to hold up 
an appearance of moving to the Deleware; his transports 
might fall down with the troops to the watering place, 
or even pass the Hook, and there be joined by Admiral 
Arbuthnot and the troops sent to the Chesapeak with 
General Phillips, and while our attention is drawn that 
way suddenly return and push up this river. The letter 
lately sent out by Sir Henry Clinton addressed to General 
Schuyler I am informed was brought up by a field officer. 
Cap* Pray who commands the water guard writes me 
that he learnt from Singsing, that he (the field officer) 
was seen on a hill near that place, either when coming 
up, or on his return, takeing a view of Verplank's and 
Stony Points with a glass; but the distance there is such 
that little knowledge could be obtained. However, 
should they have designs this way, either sudden or 
deliberate, I hope we shall be ready to give them a 
proper reception. Your Excellency may be assured that 
nothing in my power shall be wanting to effect it. I 
think, as I have before expressed, our greatest danger 
(and great it is) if a seige should take place is the want 
of proper supplies of provisions. 

Major Bauman informs me that the artillery com- 
panies at present at this post are very inadequate to the 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 191 

necessary duties of the differant works, and are rendered 
more so by the late removal of one of the strongest 
companies. I find the number of musket carteredges in 
the magazines, by continued diminution, are very insuffi- 
cient in case of seige and need a very considerable 
augmentation from the magazine at Fishkill, which I 
request your Excellency will be pleased to order the 
commissary military stores to supply. 

Enclosed are the proceeding of a general court martial 
on several culprits. I have passed upon all but one, viz*, 
Kobert Maples alias John Walker, whose sentence being 
capital I submit to your Excellency. 

I intended yesterday to have taken the liberty to have 
enclosed Lt. Col Antill's and M r Keese's opinion on 
having the provost erected on Pollapas Island, but 
omitted it. 

About seventy recruits arrived last night from Massa- 
chusetts. I am informed that a very considerable 
number are coming on. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

West Point, April 25 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — The A. P. M. G. has informed me 
that 240,000 dollars new emission is sent to the pay office 
by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to pay the troops 
of their Line. The committee from the army now at 
Boston lately informed me by letter that they had agreed 
with the Commonwealth on a compleat settlement for the 
last year's pay, and that in case any money arrived at 
the pay office, it should be received for the present year. 
The troops belonging to the Commonwealth, both officers 



192 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

and men, are in extreme want of money. I request that 
orders may issue for their relief as soon as your Excel- 
lency may think it convenient. The musters are made 
for Jan ry , Feb ry , and March. April is nearly gone, and if 
your Excellency should think proper that the troops 
should receive four months' pay the rolls can be corn- 
pleated in a few days for the present month. The wants 
and distresses of the troops are too well known to your 
Excellency to need my mentioning them. 

I forward two deserters from Arnold's corps. They 
report the capture of the frigate Confedracy. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Col Hughes, D. Q. M. at Fishkill, has just ap- 
plied for twenty men for the season, to be employed at 
Newburgh as colliers. He represents the necessity of 
the measure being adopted, and that the want of the 
money in the Q. M. department allows of no other expe- 
dient. It is a great pity that men procured for recruit- 
ing the army and on most exorbitant bounties should be 
made colliers and put on every kind of service instead of 
being drilled and formed soldiers. I wish your Excel- 
lency's opinion and direction in the case. 

W. H. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

West Point, April 27 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have mentioned to some of the 
principal officers of the Massachusetts Line the receiving 

* This letter was answered, April 28, by Colonel Humphrys, aide-de-camp, who 
wrote : "I am directed by his Excellency, the Commander in Chief, to inform you that 
the troops of the Massachusetts Line may receive four months' pay." — Eds. 



1781.] TIMOTHY PICKERING. 193 

but three months' pay at this instant, viz* ; for Jan ry , 
Feb ry , and March, out of the monies sent on by their Com- 
monwealth, and the fourth month a short time hence, 
but I find their distresses so great, and their debts so 
accumulated, that it is not possible for them to do with 
less than the four months. The distresses of the army 
were so great the last summer that Congress resolved 
that tw r o months' pay should be immediately advanced 
to them, but not a farthing has yet been received. The 
Commonwealth of Massachusetts by uncommon taxes, I 
am just informed, have determined to relieve their own 
troops. The troops, I find, expect it, and it will tend 
to create uneasiness, both in the army and at home, 
if they do not. I therefore request that as soon as 
the April muster can be compleated four months' pay 
may be drawn. The men have been relieved by 
their gratuity money, but the officers suffer beyond 
discription. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



TIMOTHY PICKERING TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Newburgh, May 11, 1781. 

Sir, — After the repeated orders that have been given 
for the transportation of the salted provisions westward 
of Connecticut River to the army proved fruitless, as the 
several towms generally neglected to perform a service 
which was as well their duty as it was essential to the 
support of the army, to prevent the fatal mischiefs that 
would ensue from a total want of provisions, I was 
induced to offer payment for the transport of all the 
provisions which on this pressing occasion should be 

13 



194 THE HEATH PAPERS. [178-1 

brought forward to Hudson's River. But the promise of 
payment on the delivery of the provisions (and which I 
was ready to make) had no effect. With people so 
utterly regardless of the most essential interests of their 
country, it was apparent that nothing save military force 
would have any operation. On a representation of these 
facts, the Commander in Chief has accordingly authorized 
me to apply the aid of the military. To this authority 
my consequent orders are conformed, and the business 
is now in execution, or rather the execution is commenc- 
ing, — the authority referred to was given me but yester- 
day. A copy of my orders are inclosed, together with a 
list of the towns in Connecticut at which provisions are 
deposited. From these you will be able to judge of the 
quantities of provisions that will be transported in any 
given time. If parties of troops are furnished agreeably 
to the orders given, and they do their duty, I cannot 
suppose that the transportation will fail. 

When I first promised payment of the hire of the 
teams, I had no idea of extending it beyond Danbury, 
or such like distance, as it was the dutv of the State to 
transport the provisions to a deposit at about the same 
distance from the North River. Nor do I now intend to 
pay the hire of a single team that is forced into the 
service, unless the agents employed on this occasion 
make any special agreements for that purpose. The 
promise of payment was made to save myself and the 
people from a measure so disagreeable as impressing. I 
hope, however, that the State of Connecticut will relieve 
me of the transportation from any but the nearest towns; 
for the money promised for this service by me can very 
ill be spared. 

To carry on transportation, to forward live-stock, and 
for the other necessary services in Connecticut, I expected 
my deputy would be furnished with money by the State; 
but he has received none: pay-table orders have supplied 



1781.] TIMOTHY PICKERING. 195 

its place, but these (he informs me) are greatly depre- 
ciated, and it becomes daily more difficult to do business 
with them. 

It is necessary you should be informed that without 
money in hand it is impossible to do business in the 
States at a distance from the army. In New- York and 
New-Jersey the army take what is wanted ; and the 
people (with amazing patience) have submitted to the 
oppression, partly thro' fear, and in part from a convic- 
tion of the indispensable necessity of the army's being 
supplied with the articles so taken. Unless the eastern 
States furnish money to my deputies to enable them 
to continue the transportation from the places of de- 
posit, and to forward live-stock, both must stop or part 
(a measure to be deprecated) be sold to send on the 
residue. 

As soon as the grass is grown sufficiently, I expect a 
considerable transportation of stores and provisions will 
be effected by the ox teams engaged to serve with the 
army the ensuing campaign. The number of teams 
demanded of my deputies for the four eastern States are 
mentioned in the inclosed list. Col Hatch in April had 
engaged about 130 ; and M r Pomeroy his whole quota, 
but he expected to lose some of them, which he feared 
would be drawn away by the powerful attraction of gold 
to serve with the French army. All these teams were to 
move the fore part of the present month, loaded with 
stores and provisions, to the army : the backwardness of 
the season, and the scarcity of dry forage will prevent 
them. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, your most obed* serv*. 

T. Pickering, Q. M G. 

Major General Heath. 



196 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN TRUMBULL.* 

Hartford, May 14, 1781. 

Sir, — The objects of my commission to the eastern 
States at this time are to present the address of his Ex- 
cellency General Washington, representing the alarming 
state of the army on account of the want of provisions, 
to entreat immediate temporary relief, and endeavour 
the establishment of some more permanent and effectual 
mode of supply in future. To obtain the first, which 
cannot admit of any the least delay without the inevitable 
evacuation of Fort Schuyler and exposing the army to 
dissolution, beef cattle, fully equal to the late demand 
of M r Commissary Stevens, must be immediately sent on, 
together with all the salted meat in the western parts of 
the State of Connecticut. In the second place, a regular 
and effectual mode must be adopted and uniformly car- 
ried into execution for supplying the army during the 
campaign. Without this the same perplexing wants, 
irregularities, and distresses will continue which have 
existed in time past. The quantity of fresh beef which 
will be wanted from the State of Connecticut from the 
first of June during the present campaign is pointed 
out in the estimate of the commissary general of issues, 
copy of which I have the honor to present herewith. 
The best mode for ensuring supplies, and whether it 
may not be best for the Legislatures of the four New 
England States by committees appointed for that purpose 
to confer thereon, can be best determined by your Hon- 
orable Assembly. But in the mean time to prevent the 
impending dissolution of the army I earnestly entreat 
that the State of Connecticut would without a moment's 

* Letters of similar purport were sent to Governor Greene of Rhode Island and to Gov- 
ernor Hancock of Massachusetts, and shortly afterward General Heath visited Exeter for I 
the purpose of delivering his despatches in person.— Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 197 

delay precisely comply with the requisitions of the quar- 
termaster and commissary which have been lately made. 
It may be impracticable at present to transport the salted 
meat from the eastern parts of the State of Connecticut. 
I request to be informed what quantities have been pro- 
cured, at what places, and under whose charge it actually 
is, and if any part of the provisions yet remain uncol- 
lected, they may be ordered without loss of time to the 
place or places which have been pointed out for their 
deposit. 

A supply of rum is also essentially necessary. When I 
left the army men on the severest fatigue had nothing 
but water to drink. This will not only disspirit the army, 
but soon injure their health. I am instructed to enquire 
what quantities of rum are in store, and at what places, 
and in what manner it may be forwarded. The arrange- 
ments of transportation should be so made as to have the 
articles carried entirely through to the army without 
having them stopped on the road. I am also instructed 
to urge the forwarding of the summer clothing, and wish 
to be informed in what readiness it is at present. On 
the whole, as the continuance of the army in the field, 
and its being of any real service after the great expence 
which has been incurred in raising and recruiting of it, 
rest entirely on the supplies being seasonably and amply 
furnished, I flatter myself that notwithstanding all the 
embarrassments under which the State labors, that zeal 
for the public service which on every emergency has 
been so apparent will now prompt to those exertions 
which alone can retain the army in existence. 

I have the honor to be, with the most perfect respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

His Excellency Governor Trumbull. 



198 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Hartford, May- 15 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I arrived here yesterday afternoon, 
found the General Assembly siting, presented your letter 
to Governor Trumbull, together with a representation 
containing the spirit of my instructions. This morning 
I attended the Governor, Council, and Representatives 
in the Council Chamber, when the papers were read, and 
I had an opportunity to speak on them. The papers 
were committed to a committee of both Houses. I have 
the pleasure to acquaint your Excellency they had that 
attention paid them which their interesting importance 
required. A resolution has passed to send on immediately 
160 head of beef cattle, which it is supposed will amount 
to 5,000 rations p r day to the first of June, one thousand 
barrels of salted meat is also to be forwarded with the 
greatest dispatch, with a quantity of rum. There is 
about 1,000 barrels of salted meat deposited in this town. 
It has been repacked, and is well stored. I shall endeav- 
our in the morning to obtain a return of the whole quan- 
tity which has been procured in this State. I believe an 
accurate return has been given in of the whole. An ad- 
dition is made to the committee of both Houses who are 
to proceed to the consideration of the great supply for 
the campaign. Their resolutions on this head also, I 
think, will equal your expectations. I have sent off an 
express to M r Phelps to forward all the beef cattle he 
can command without a moment's delay. Shall proceed 
to Rhode Island to-morrow. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

II is Excellency General Washington. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 109 

WILLIAM HEATH TO MESHECH WEARE. 

Roxbuky, May 22 nd , 1781. 

Sir, — The objects of my commission to the eastern 
States at this time are to present the address of his Ex- 
cellency General Washington representing the alarming 
situation of the army on account of the want of pro- 
visions, to entreat immediate temporary relief, and en- 
deavour the establishment of some more permanent and 
effectual mode of supply in future. To obtain the first 
which cannot admit of any the least delay without the 
inevitable evacuation of Fort Schuyler and exposing the 
army to dissolution, beef cattle fully equal to the late 
demand of M r Commissary Stevens must be immediately 
sent on. In the 2 nd place a regular and effectual mode 
must be adopted and uniformly carried into execution for 
supplying the army daring the campaign ; without this 
the same perplexing wants, irregularities, and distresses 
will continue which have existed in time past. The 
quantity of fresh beef which will be wanted from the 
State of New Hampshire from the first of June next, 
and during the campaign, is specified in the estimate of 
the Commissary General of Issues coppy of which I have 
the honor to present herewith. The best method for 
insuring this supply, and whether it may not be best for 
Legislatures of the New England States by committees 
appointed for that purpose to confer thereon, can be best 
determined by your Honorable Assembly ; but I most 
earnestly request that it may be accomplished in such 
way as may be thought best, without a moment's loss of 
time, and on the most certain basis, so that the beef 
cattle may be punctually put in motion on a fixed day in 
each week, which alone can ensure a regular supply. 

As it may be impracticable at present to transport the 
salted meat from the State of New Hampshire, I request 
to be informed by an official return what quantities have 



200 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

been procured, where and under whose charge it actually 
is, if any part of the salted provisions have not yet been 
collected, that it may without loss of time be ordered to 
the place or places pointed out for its deposit, repacked 
and safely stored. 

A supply of rum is also essentially necessary for the 
troops. When I left the army men on the severest 
fatigue had nothing but water to drink. I am instructed 
to enquire what quantity of rum is in store in your State, 
and at what place or places, and in what manner it may 
be forwarded. The arrangments of transportation should 
be so made as to have the articles carried entirely through 
to the army without leaving them on the road. I am 
also instructed to urge the forwarding the summer cloth- 
ing, and request to be informed in what readiness it is at 
present. As the completion of this important business 
will require my return to Boston before your arrange- 
ments may be fully made, I request your Honor will be 
pleased to inform me by letter of the final determination 
of your State, and of each particular, that I may make 
a report to the Commander in Chief conformable to my 
instructions. 

As the continuance of the army in the field, and its 
being of any real service after the great expence which 
has been incurred in raising and recruiting it, rest en- 
tirely on the supplies being seasonably and amply fur- 
nished, I flatter myself that notwithstanding all the 
embarrassments under which your State labors, that zeal 
for the public service which on every emergency has been 
so apparant will now prompt to those exertions which 
alone can retain the army in existance. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Honor's most obed* ser fc . 

W. Heath, M. Gen. 

P. S. The commissary's estimate of rum is one hun- 
dred and twenty hogsheds p r month, the D. Q. M. at 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 201 

Boston informs me no person is yet appointed to receive 
the store at N. 4. and request you will be pleased to 
appoint one. 

Hon. Meshech Weare, Esqu re . 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, May 29 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I had the honor last to address 
your Excellency from Hartford the 15 th inst., with a 
representation of my proceedings to that time. The 
next morning Governor Trumbull informed me that there 
were seven thousand barrels salted meat in the State of 
Connecticut, which may be depended on for the use of 
the army, and at least two thousand barrels of fish, 
with 40 hhd. rum at Hartford and 15 at Philadelphia. 
The provisions were not all collected to the places 
pointed out for their deposit. I earnestly requested they 
might be. 

M r Phelps, superintendant of purchases in Massachu- 
setts, before my departure from Hartford informed me 
in answer to my letter to him, that he would exert his 
utmost endeavours to forward on beef cattle, and I have 
good grounds to conclude he has done it. From Hartford 
I proceeded to Rhode Island. The Assembly were not 
siting. Governor Greene assured me that no exertions 
of his should be wanting to comply with the requisitions 
when the Assembly met, which was to be on yesterday. 
From Rhode Island I proceeded to Boston. The old 
Assembly were up. Governor Hancock assured me that 
he with his Council would do all in the power of the 
executive authority, and a supply of money has been 
sent on to M r Phelps. The new Assembly are to meet 
to-morrow, when the requisitions will have the first atten- 
tion. From Boston I proceeded to New Hampshire. 



202 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

The Assembly had been for some time prorogued. The 
President and Council represented the embarrassments 
of the State, both on account of their finances and the 
falling off of two of their western counties to Vermont, 
but assured me that every thing in their power should be 
done. Their Assembly don't meet until the 2 nd Wednes- 
day in June, and the President informed me that it was 
scarcly possible to call them specially sooner, should he 
attempt it. 

I have requested returns of the provision, rum, and 
clothing in the several States, but found it was not in 
the power of the executives to give them immediately. I 
believe the stock of rum is but small. The summer cloth- 
ing in Connecticut in tollerable forwardness ; in Rhode 
Island nearly compleat and soon to be forwarded ; in 
Massachusetts in some forwardness, but by no means 
compleat; in New T Hampshire but little prepared, and 
the prospects not the most promising. 

Having delivered the several addresses and made rep- 
resentations thereon, I shall continue my importunities 
untill I obtain official answers from the respective States ; 
hope they will be such as will be satisfactory. As soon 
as I obtain them shall have the honor of forwarding them. 
I request to be informed whether by the salted provisions 
to be transported from the western parts of Massachusetts, 
those at Springfield as well as Great Barrington are ment 
to be included or only the latter. I shall loose no time 
in endeavouring to execute the commission with which 
your Excellency has honord me, and to return to the 
army ; in the mean time I pray that in the arrangment 
for the campaign, which from several circumstances I 
have reason to apprehend are makeing, I may not be 
forgotten. 

We have no news in this quarter, except a report that 
the British have thrown succours into Gibralter. The 
two French frigates which were in Boston harbour put to 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 203 

sea the day before yesterday. The money is at present 
in a fluctuating situation. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

The Assembly have passed an act for furnishing the 
quarter master with waggons by impress when necessary. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 

Roxbury, May 30 th , 1781. 

Sir, — Having proceeded to the several New England 
States with the address of his Excellency General Wash- 
ington requesting supplies for the army, I returned to 
this place the 27 th instant. 

My instructions which I had the honor of shewing to 
your Excellency among other things enjoyn as follows, — 
" After having delivered the dispatches with which you 
are charged, and made such further representations as 
you may judge necessary, you will not cease your appli- 
cations and importunities untill you are informed officially 
whether effectual measures are or will be taken to prevent 
the army from starving and disbanding, — what supplies 
in general, and particularly of beef cattle may certainly be 
depended upon to be delivered at fixed regular periods, 
monthly or weekly, at the army during the campaign." 
With respect to the first part of this instruction, tempo- 
rary relief, your Honorable Assembly before I left Hart- 
ford had taken the necessary measures which I hope have 
been carried into execution ; with respect to the latter, 
the permanent supply for the campaign, I request to be 
informed if that important business has been determined, 
or is yet under consideration. Permit me also to request 



204 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

a coppy of the return of the salted provisions, the places 
of deposit, and whether they have been repacked and 
stored, also the state of the summer clothing. It is need- 
less for me to observe how much the comfort and con- 
venience of the troops will be promoted by the clothing 
being early sent on. 

The probability that the army may ere long be in 
motion, the warm and faint season having nearly arrived, 
induce me to request that the necessary supply of rum 
may be seasonably provided and forwarded to the army. 
The commissary's estimate is one hundred and twenty 
hogsheds p r month, from the eastern States. The pro- 
portion of the State of Connecticut from the general 
requisition can be easily ascertained. Duty to my country 
and the army, and fidelity to my General, who has 
enjoyned on me the most assiduous endeavours to have 
this great business, on which the support of the army 
entirely depends, accomplished as soon as possible con- 
strain me to be importunate for its completion, and I 
pray your candor if I have or should hereafter in any 
instance appear particularly sollicitous. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellence's most obed fc serv\ 

W. Heath, M. General. 

His Excellency Governor Trumbull. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Roxbury, June 7 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I am still pursuing the completion 
of my commission. By a letter I received the last even- 
ing from Rhode Island I am informed that Governor 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 213-215. — Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 205 

Greene has written your Excellency an answer to your 
address, the doings of the Assembly, and the condition 
of the provisions and clothing in that State. 

This State (Massachusetts) have the business of per- 
manent supplies now under consideration in the General 
Assembly ; their committee have reported a convention 
of committees for forming a system for supplying the 
army in future. I think that notwithstanding the embar- 
rassments under which the States labor they will grant 
every thing requested of them. Your requisition for 
men, both for compleating the battalions and the militia 
will be complied with. 

Yesterday afternoon the continental frigate Alliance 
arrived in Boston harbour from France. The Alliance 
has taken six prizes ; two sloops of war, one of which is 
copper-bottomd ; two West Indiamen, and two priva- 
teers. In the engagement with the sloops of war which 
were both at the same time, and in a calm, Cap 1 Barry 
received a wound in the shoulder by a grape shot, badly 
but not mortally. His cap* of marines and seven or eight 
men were killed, and near twenty wounded. The Alli- 
ance has brought no clothing. The clothing was all on 
board the La Fayette, and there is much reason to fear 
she foundered at sea in a heavy gale near six weeks 
since. Some unaccountable fatality seems to attend our 
obtaining clothing. 

The last evening signals were out for a fleet which is 
supposed to be French transport with drafts for the 
army at Rhode Island. A brig* arrived the day before 
yesterday ; the troops she brought are Germans for the 
regiment Deux Ponts. It is said there are twelve or 
fourteen transports under convoy of two ships of war, — 
the number of troops not very considerable. Your 
Excellency will have heard before this reaches you of 
the arrival of the French fleet in the West Indies. It 
is formidable. There are but two ships of 64 guns ; the 



206 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

others are from 74 to 100 guns, seventeen of which are 
copper-bottomd. 

I am anxious to compleat the business on which I have 
been sent, and to return to the army. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency G 1 Washington. 



PETITION TO THE GENERAL COURT OF MASSACHUSETTS. 

To the Honorable the Senate and House of Represen- 
tatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General 
Court assembled, June, 1781. 

The Petition of William Heath, Major General in the 
army of the United States of America, and specially 
commissioned and instructed by his Excellency General 
Washington to apply to the New England States for sup- 
plies for the army, — Humbly Sheweth : 

That your petitioner among other things is instructed 
as follows, — u After having delivered the dispatches with 
which you are charged, and made such farther represen- 
tations as you may think necessary, you will not cease 
your applications and importunities untill you are in- 
formed officially whether effectual measures are or will 
t be taken to prevent the army from starving and disband- 
ing, what supplies in general, and particularly of Beef 
Cattle may certainly be depended upon to be delivered 
at fixed regular periods (monthly or weekly) at the army 
during the whole campaign." 

The dispatches with which I was charged were com- 
municated to the Honorable the General Assembly at the 
opening of the session, and altho I am assured the time 
and deliberations of the Hon 1 Assembly have been em- 
ployed on the most important business, yet, as on the 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 207 

success of my commission not only the future success of 
the army but its present existance depend, and my in- 
structions en joy n the most assiduous endeavours to carry 
them into effect, duty to my country and the army, and 
fidelity to my General, constrain me to renew my solicita- 
tions, and earnestly to intreat that the supplies which are 
requested may be granted as soon as may be convenient. 
The late requisitions for compleating the battalions, hold- 
ing a body of militia in readiness to march, and the 
order for forwarding ordnance and military stores, clearly 
evince how necessary it is that the Commander in Chief 
should be informed what supplies he may depend upon, 
for without this your Honors are sensible no plan of 
operation can be concerted or attempted, or an increasing 
army even kept together. 

Your petitioner therefore prays that the quantity of 
fresh beef specified in the requisition may be granted 
and regularly forwarded, that the salted meat in the 
western parts of the State may be immediately forwarded, 
together with the necessary supply of rum which is in- 
dispensibly necessary for the health and comfort of your 
troops. I beg your candor if in any instance I have or 
hereafter should appear to be particularly solicitous, and 
your petitioner as in duty bound will ever pray. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Indorsed by Gen. Heath : Petition to General Assembly, June 12 th , 1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO MESHECH WEARE. 

Roxbury, June 13 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have been honored with yours of the 4 th in- 
stant ; am happy in the early measures taken by the 
Honorable Committee of Safety to have beef cattle im- 
mediately purchased and forwarded for the relief of the 
army, and hope the purchasers have been able to procure 



208 THE IIEATH PAPERS. [1781. $■] 

a quantity equal to what was requested, and as your 
Honorable General Assembly convenes this day, I assure 
myself that they will take effectual measures to ensure 
the permanent supplys for the campaign and have them 
seasonably forwarded. The late circular requisitions to 
complete the battalions, and also to hold a body of the 
militia in readiness to march if called for evince that the 
grant of a less quantity of provisions than has been re- 
quested will be insufficient and may be productive of ill 
consequences. I therefore intreat that the full requisition 
may be granted, and forwarded with punctuality weekly. 

The General Assembly here have proposed a convention 
of commitees to meet in the course of this month to estab- 
lish a regular system of supplys, of which you will probably 
be informed by his Excellency Governor Hancock p r this 
post, but I pray that in the interim the supplies requested 
may be punctually sent on. As I am specially instructed 
to obtain official returns of the state of the salted pro- 
visions and rum in the several New England States de- 
signed for the army, permit me to request those from 
New Hampshire agreable to mine of the 22 nd ulto. as 
soon as may be convenient, and that your proportion of 
rum which is indispensibly necessary for the health as 
well as comfort of the troops may be forwarded to .the 
army. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Honor's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Hon. Meshech Weare, Esquire. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN" HANCOCK. 

Roxbury, June 17 th , 1781. 

Sir, — Enclosed I have the honor to lay before your 
Excellency a letter received yesterday p r express from 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 209 

his Excellency General Washington ; from the tenor of 
the letter it appears that the Commander in Chief has 
settled his plan for the campaign upon the presumption 
of the success of my application to the New England 
States for supplies, and that a failure in the smallest de- 
gree on the part of the States will involve the army in 
the deepest distress, and probably frustrate every advan- 
tage we might otherwise obtain. I am exceedingly 
happy in the grant of fresh beef made by the Honorable 
the General Assembly of this Commonwealth, and hope 
the most certain and effectual measures will be adopted 
to ensure a seasonable collection and regular forwarding 
of it to the army, and that measures will also be taken 
to ensure a supply between this time and the opperation 
of the late resolve. By his Excellency's letter not only 
the salted provisions in the county of Berkshire but those 
also at Springfield are to be forwarded immediately to 
the army. By my former instructions I was directed to 
request that if the salted provisions were not collected 
to the places appointed for their deposit it might be done 
without delay. I therefore request that all the salted 
provisions in the county of Berkshire and at Springfield 
(except such at the latter place as may be necessary for 
the marching parties) may be immediately sent on to 
Clavarack. I am sorry to find that the troops who were 
destitute of rum when I left the army several w r eeks 
since still continue so, and that numbers through hard 
fatigue and the want of refreshments are falling sick, 
while our country and our tables abound with varity of 
liquors. I assure myself the guardians of the country 
will never leave their army to faint under fatigue and fall 
into hospitals through the want of the most indifferant 
refreshments. I intreat that a quantity of rum may be 
immediately put in motion for the releif of the army. 

I am directed to represent to the States that almost 
every article of summer clothing in the public store 

14 



210 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

which was of any vallue has been sent on to the southern 
army, and that there is no other possible alternative but 
for the troops to be supplied by their own States or 
become literally naked. 

Orders are received for forwarding to the army a 
quantity of wollen clothing now in the public store in 
Boston. I fear it will not be in the power of the D. Q. 
M. G. to effect the transportation without the aid of the 
State, I therefore pray that such assistance as may appear 
to be necessary may be afforded. I am fully sensible of 
the great exertions already made by this Commonwealth, 
and the very pecular embarrassments under which it at 
present labors. These give me pain when duty compels 
to solicit further exertions, but when the aspect of the 
public affairs afford a flattering omen principals both of 
interest and policy conspire to urge them, as the most 
sure and speedy means to obtain peace and happiness. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

P. S. After the enclosed letter which is the original 
has been laid before the Hon ble the General Assembly, I 
would request the return of it. 

W. H. 

Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Roxbury, June 18th, 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 7 th inst. I have not for a moment neglected the busi- 
ness of my mission or ceased my solicitations to effect it, 
and have the pleasure to assure your Excellency that 
there is a disposition in all the New England States to 

* Washington's answer to this letter and the letter of June 21 is printed in 5 Mass. 
Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 217, 218. — Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 211 

afford every aid and support you have required as far as 
is within their power. 

This Commonwealth have passed the most spirited 
resolutions for compleating their battalions. To ensure 
the seven thousand rations of fresh beef p r day for the 
month of July and the remainder of the campaign, they 
have passed a resolution requiring the several towns to 
collect monthly three hundred and seventeen thousand 
pounds of live beef, which quantity it is supposed, after 
the deduction of hides and tallow and the wastage in 
driving, & c , will afford the seven thousand pounds p r day 
at the army. Blank executions are sent out that in case 
of any delinquency the deficiency may be levied by dis- 
traint immediately. To ensure a supply between this 
time and the opperation of the resolve a sum of money, 
partly in specie, is sent to M r Phelps, the superintendant, 
to enable him to continue his purchases. I think the 
supply of fresh beef is certain in Massachusetts. From 
Rhode Island your Excellency has already heard ; from 
Connecticut and New Hampshire I expect to hear by 
tomorrow's post. Your Excellency's letter of the 7 th with 
a pressing solicitation I have laid before the Assembly 
here, and shall by the post send coppies to the other three 
States. The rum has been under consideration ; today 
a quantity will be procured and forwarded immediately, 
(in all my former applications I had represented the 
necessity of it both for the comfort and health of the 
troops) and flattered myself twenty hogsheds from Con- 
necticut had long since arrived at the army. I had also 
requested Gov r Green to forward a part of that in store 
at Rhode Island. The quantity I am soliciting is one 
hundred and twenty hh d p r month. 

Between two and three thousand frocks and overhalls 
will go on from this State in a few days. I have and 
shall continue to urge on all the States the necessity of a 
competent supply. 



212 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Mess 1 " 8 Otis and Henly bad opened all the packages of 
cloathing from Spain by order, as they inform me, of a 
member of the Board of War, General Cornel, before I 
was honored with your letter, and they add that it was 
fortunate that they did, as some of the packages were 
wet. The waistcoats, breeches, a number of the hatts, 
& c , were sent forward the last week. I have directed the 
remainder of the whole to be packed and forwarded as 
soon as possible. 

The ordnance with the military stores are going on, the 
marine mortars will be a heavy and expensive jobb. 
The Commonwealth most chearfully grant every aid in 
their power, but the present fluctuating state of the 
currency and embarrassed state of their finances, with 
the almost instant complication of calls for provisions, 
cloathing, transportation, and compleating their battalions, 
the latter of which is attended with very great expence, 
taken all together, are a burden which trys all their feel- 
ings, and it affords a most pleasing satisfaction to see 
with how much chearf ullness and fortitude they bear it. 

A convention of committees from the four States are 
to meet at Providence on Monday next, in order to 
establish a system for a regular supply for the campaign. 

Your Excellency will doubtless before this reaches 
you have heard of the success of the arms of our great 
and good ally in the East Indies, and the probability of 
Great Britain's being striped of her invallueable posses- 
sions in that quarter of the globe. We have no other 
news of consequence that can be depended on. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 213 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 

Roxbury, June 19 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I take the liberty to enclose coppy of a letter 
which I have just received from his Excellency General 
Washington, from which it appears how much depends 
upon the Eastern States most pointedly and punctually 
complying with every part of the late requisitions for 
supplies. I hope the State of Connecticut have before 
this time made ample provision for the supply of beef 
cattle for the campaign. This Commonwealth have done 
it and have had due consideration in their tax (which is 
to be paid in beef only) to the hides, tallow, and wasteage 
in driving that their whole quota may constantly arrive 
at the army. 

I am sorry to find by his Excellency's letter that the 
troops who were destitute of rum when I left the army 
several weeks since still continue so, and that numbers 
through hard fatigue and the want of refreshments are 
falling sick, while our country abounds with a variety 
and plenty of liquors. I assure myself that those who 
are the guardians of the army, as well as country, will 
never leave their troops to faint under fatigue and fall 
into the hospitals through the want of ordinary refresh- 
ments ; and I do most earnestly entreat that a quantity 
of rum may be immediately sent on from the State of Con- 
necticut, and their proportion of the necessary supply be 
regularly forwarded in future. 

His Excellency's letter also clearly marks how indis- 
pensibly necessary it is for the summer cloathing to be 
prepared and forwarded as soon as possible. 

I am fully sensible of the great exertions already made 
by the Eastern States and the very peculiar embarrass- 
ments under which they at present labor on account of 
their finances; these considerations give me pain when 



214 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

duty compels to solicit further exertions, but when the 
aspect of public affairs afford a flattering omen, principles 
both of policy and interest conspire to urge them as the 
most speedy and sure means to obtain peace and 
happiness. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obed* &erv\ 

W. Heath. 

Governor Trumbull. 

June 21 st . 

P. S. The last evening I received a letter from his 
Excellency General Washington dated the 13 th instant. 
I have the honor to enclose coppy thereof and most 
earnestly in treat that every of its objects may have that 
instant attention which their importance require. 
I have the honor to be as before. 

W. Heath. 



JONATHAN TRUMBULL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Hartford, 20 th June, 1781. 

Sir, — Your favor of 30 th May last is before me, and in 
answer to it have to inform you that in addition to the 
doings of the General Assembly while you was in town, 
they have ordered all the salted provisions on the west side 
of Connecticut River to be transported to Fish Kill or the 
army. The whole of our salted meat and fish will be about 
8,000 barrells. Between fifty and eighty head of cattle 
were sent on to camp last week, in consequence of a sup- 
ply of £500 in specie furnished to Commissary Champion. 
To-morrow he will receive £500 more in like money which 
will be immediately applied to the same use, and the 
cattle sent on. Besides he is to receive as soon as it can 
possibly be collected £1,000 more in hard cash, which is 






1781.] JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 215 

to be expended in the same way. In addition to this 
mode of supply the Assembly have laid a tax of one 
penny on the pound which will • raise about £7,600, 
payable on the first day of each of the next succeeding 
months, in fresh beef for the army, and at the rates 
affix* by Congress, or in hard money, and ammounting 
in the whole to £30,400. Beef cattle are plenty. The 
only difficulty is the means to purchase them. My 
greatest anxiety is how we shall get them on regularly 
to camp ; we shall exert ourselves in the best manner in 
our power with the means in our hands. Col. Champion 
is appointed to join a committee of the New England 
States at Providence next Monday, to consult and devise 
measures for forwarding on provisions to the army in a 
regular manner. I have made his Excellency the Com- 
mander in Chief acquainted with these things by a letter 
of this date. I have not as yet obtain* an exact return 
of the salted beef, nor has the quarter-master acquainted 
me with the places of deposit, but orders have gone out 
for repacking the beef with the greatest care, pinning the 
hoops, &c, fit for carting. 

Fifteen hogsheads of rum belonging to this State have 
been ordered from Philadelphia which I trust have arrived 
in camp before this. Twenty more will be furnished 
and sent on soon from this to camp. 

In compliance with the General's requisition for filling 
up the Connecticutt Line, & c , the Assembly have ordered 
that in case the towns and classes have not furnished 
their men by the 25 th instant it shall be done by peremp- 
tory detachment ; the men to be mustered and at rendez- 
vous by the 5 th day of July next. They have also ordered 
the two companies of Governor's guards, all the indepen- 
dant matross companies, and light infantry thro the State, 
the two State regiments at Horsneck, and so many of the 
sea coast guards as to make up 2,100 men, to be in readi- 
ness to march at the direction of the Governor and 



216 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Council of Safety to join the army, and 500 volunteers 
to be put into readiness to join the army if called for. 

We yesterday ordered 800 men to be raised by peremp- 
tory detachment and forwith to be marched to the post 
at West Point, in consequence of a requisition from Gen- 
eral Washington for that number of men to be sent there 
for a special purpose. 

I am, with esteem and regard, dear General, 
Your obedient, hble. servant. 

Jon™ Trumbull. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THE COMMITTEES OF THE 
NEW ENGLAND STATES. 

Eoxbury, June 22 nd , 1781. 

Gentlemen, — The meeting of the Convention of Com- 
mittees from the four New England States at Providence 
on Monday the 25 th instant being in consequence of my 
applications to the States for supplies for the army, and 
my applications bottomed on the instructions of his 
Excellency General Washington, I take the liberty to lay 
before you the spirit of them as expressed by him in 
several letters. 

In my first instructions, which bear date the 9 th of May, 
I am directed to repair to the several Eastern States with 
the dispatches addressed to the Governor of Connecticut, 
Rhode Island, Massachusetts Bay, and the President of 
New Hampshire, representing the distressed situation of 
the army on account of the want of provisions. His 
Excellency then goes on to observe " The great objects 
of your attention and mission are, 1 st , an immediate supply 
of beef cattle ; 2 ndly , the transportation of all the salted 
meat in the western parts of Connecticut and Massachu- 
setts ; and 3 rdly , the establishment of a regular systematic 
effectual plan for feeding the army through the campaign. 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 217 

Unless the two former are effected the garrison of Fort 
Schuyler must inevitably, that of West Point may prob- 
ably, fall and the whole army be disbanded ; without the 
latter, the same perplexing wants, irregularities and dis- 
tress which we have so often experianced will incessantly 
occur with eventual far greater evils if not final ruin," 
'•'and I would suggest whether it would not be expedient 
for a Committee from the several States (consisting of a 
few active, sensible men) to meet at some convenient 
place in order to make out upon a uniform and great 
scale all the arrangments respecting supplies and trans- 
portation for the campaign." " You will not cease your 
applications and importunities untill you are informed 
officially whether effectual measures are or will be taken 
to prevent the army from starving and disbanding, what 
supplies in general, and particularly of beef cattle, may 
certainly be depended upon to be delivered at fixed regu- 
lar periods (monthly or weekly) at the army during the 
whole campaign." 

In a letter of the 8 th ins* his Excellency observes, " As 
the plan of the campaign is now settled upon the pre- 
sumption of the success of your application, a failure in 
the smallest degree on the part of the States will involve 
us in the deepest distress and probably frustrate every 
advantage we might otherwise obtain. I only wish the 
Legislatures may be impressed with these ideas, and stim- 
ulated to exertions proportioned to the occasion." " Not 
a drop of rum has yet come on, and the physitians report 
that the artificers (who work exceedingly hard) are fall- 
ing sick for want of it, besides you must be sensible it is 
extremely necessary for other purposes." " I am per- 
suaded you will not loose sight of the supply of beef 
cattle called for from the Eastern States, nor give a 
moment's quiet to them, untill ample provision is made 
for obtaining the whole of it. The means of transporta- 
tion are equally necessary." 



218 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

In a letter of the 13 th ins* his Excellency observes, "I 
wrote you on the 8 th instant, urging the necessity of hav- 
ing the supplies of provision, rum, and clothing immedi- 
ately forwarded from the States. These things are of 
such immense importance to all our plans that they can- 
not be repeated too often or pressed with too much 
importunity"; and in a letter of the 15 th his Excellency 
again observes, " I am pleased with the representations 
of the favorable disposition of the States which I receive 
from almost every quarter. I lament the embarrassments 
they experiance, and fear without a spirited and constant 
exertion we shall be again disapointed in the essential 
article of beef cattle, — a repetition of disapointment, I 
need not tell you, will be attended with fatal conse- 
quences." Having, Gentlemen, thus given you some par- 
agraphs of his Excellency's instructions and letters, from 
which it appears how much depends on ample supplies 
being seasonably and constantly furnished, how anxious 
our illustrious General is to have them ensured, and I 
add inconceivable will be the advantages or disadvantages 
to the States eventually as the supplies are furnished or 
withheld. The quantity of fresh beef requested for the 
campaign is specified in the enclosed estimate of the 
Commissary General and cannot admit of any diminu- 
tion. Due consideration should be had and an allowance 
made for the hides, tallow, and wasteage in driving, that 
the whole quantity required may certainly arrive at the 
army, and I earnestly request that the beef cattle may 
go on weekly, and I submit to your consideration whether 
it may not be best to fix it pointedly to a certain day in 
the week that not a single day may be lost or the least 
inovation on the plan happen. One hundred and twenty 
hogsheads of rum p r month for the campaign is required 
from the New England States ; the proportion each State 
is to furnish of this quantity may be stated from the gen- 
eral requisition of Congress of Nov r last. The movements 






i:81.] WILLIAM HEATH. 210 

which the army will soon commence will render a supply 
of rum as indispensibly necessary as the other species of 
provisions, and I request that effectual measures may be 
adopted to have it provided and seasonably forwarded to 
the army. The salted provisions in the western parts of 
Connecticut and Massachusetts (in the latter including 
those at Great Barrington and Springfield) were some 
time since to be transported to the army, those in Massa- 
chusetts to Clavarack as the nearest point of embarka- 
tion. If this has not already been done, I pray it may be 
effected without the least delay. It is also indispensibly 
necessary that the States should as soon as possible for- 
ward their summer clothing, as without it their troops 
will suffer exceedingly. 

One tenth part of the salted provisions, beef cattle, and 
rum should be sent to Albany (untill otherwise ordered). 
From M r Phelps's situation it may be most convenient for 
him to supply that quarter, or otherwise should you think 
proper. 

As the army can never be properly supplied but 
through a regular systematical plan, and without it im- 
mense sums of money may be expended to little or no 
purpose, I rest assured that the zeal and abilities of the 
Convention will lead them to the establishment of a 
plan which will ensure ample supplies to the army and 
lasting advantage to the States. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Gentlemen, 

Your most obedient servant. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Hon ble Convention of Committees from the New England States. 



220 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, June 24 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I last addressed your Excellency on 
the 18 th instant. I have since been honored with yours of 
the 13 th and 15 th . The towns are now makeing the 
greatest exertions to compleat their quota of men for the 
continental battalions, the greater part of them will be 
raised, but some of them for the campaign only ; these, 
however, will be of the best men. The militia will be 
detached conformable to your requisition, but I think will 
not be able [to] join the army by the 15 th of July, altho in 
this and all other instances there appears to be a disposi- 
tion in the States to exert themselves to the utmost of their 
power. I hope the supply of fresh beef, that is the quantity 
specified in the commissary general's estimate which I 
received from head quarters, will be made certain, or at 
least nearly the whole. In Governor Greene's letter to me 
(and I was informed he had written your Excellency fully) 
he observes, that the Assembly had order'd sixty thousand 
weight of beef to be purchased and sent on to the army, 
one half to be delivered by the last day of June, the 
remainder by the last of July ; for the month of June 
the quantity is agreable to the estimate, but for July 
is the one half. On receiving the letter I immediately 
wrote Governor Greene and desired the full quantity 
requested might be granted, and for the time mentioned, 
without the last deviation from the requisition ;• this I 
urged as indispensibly necessary. I have not received 
an answer to that particular. I had a hint yesterday that 
it was observed by some of the Legislature at Khode 
Island, that the two thousand weight p r day was more 
than the requisition of Congress of Nov r . Upon having 
recourse to it I find it is so, while the present estimate 
on the other States is much short of it ; whether this 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 221 

occured to the C. General, when he forn\ed the estimate, 
or whether he had reasons for it, I cannot say. The 
Convention of Committees are to meet tomorrow for the 
final arrangements. Governor Greene also reports six 
hundred barrels of salted provisions, and eleven thousand 
gallons of rum in store, but apprehends that the pro- 
visions and some part of the rum will be wanted for 
the militia ordered to garrison Rhode Island. 

I some days since again importuned the four States to 
forward a quantity of rum immediately and continue a 
regular supply. Governor Greene wrote me by yester- 
day's post that their Council of War had ordered five 
thousand gallons of rum to Hartford by water, but that 
it was not possible for the State to get it further. I 
shall write M r Pomroy tomorrow to forward the rum if 
possible, but fear at this time it will be very difficult, if 
possible, on account of the great number of teams taken 
up by the French army, and for the transportation of the 
military stores, & c . I submit to your Excellency whether 
it may not be well for the Q. M. G. to afford some aid 
to M r Pomroy, if in his power. The rum from this State 
will go on to Clavarack. I hope a quantity from Con- 
necticut has before this time reachd the army. The 
clothing in the hands of M essrs Otis and Henley is packing 
with the utmost dispatch and will go on in the course of 
this week. The ordnance and military stores are gone 
and going on. In the course of the last week I repeated 
my solicitations to all the States, respecting the men, 
provisions, clothing, and hope in the course of this week 
to know the final determination of each of them ; after- 
wards I know not what further can be done by me and 
wish to know if it be consistant with ybur pleasure that 
I return to the army. I think I may venture to assure 
your Excellency that you may depend on much from all 
the Eastern States, altho possibly there will be some 
deficiency 






222 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

I most heartily congratulate your Excellency on the 
successes of the American arms at the southward. Those 
successes are not only important in themselves, but will 
at this time and in that part of the continent be pro- 
ductive of the best consequences. They animate here. 
We have no news in this quarter. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* ser fc . 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I apprehend that when the C. General formed 
his estimate, all the force intended for the field was 
taken into view, and that nothing extra is to be done on 
account of the militia, but of this I wish to be informed. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Roxbury, June 26 th , 1781. 

Sir, — It is now more than six weeks since the army 
have been experiancing the want of rum, and encounter- 
ing the hot faint season and hard fatigue supported by 
water only. The repeated injunctions of my General, 
backed by the feelings of humanity, have compelled me 
more than once to renew my solicitations for relief. It 
gives me pain to reiterate them, but duty constrains me 
to do it, and I do once more most earnestly intreat that a 
quantity of rum may be immediately sent on for the relief 
of the army, and followed by a regular supply in future. 
As the comfort, the health and spirit of the army are 
essential to the public interest, and the want of these 
the certain source of disapointment and expence, I per- 
suad myself relief will not be longer procrastinated. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* ser\ 

W. Heath. 

Gov r Hancock. 



1781.] WILLIAM DEATH. 223 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, June 27 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I am this evening honored with 
yours of the 20 th , enclosing one to the commanding offi- 
cer of the Corps of Invalids at Boston. I shall afford 
the commanding officer every aid in my power to facili- 
tate his march to West Point. 

I have been this evening honored with a letter from 
Governor Trumbull of the 20 th instant giving a pritty 
particular account of the proceeding of the State of Con- 
necticut respecting its quota of men and provisions for 
the army ; but as Governor Trumbull observes, " I have 
made his Excellency the Commander in Chief acquainted 
with these things, by a letter of this date," it is unneces- 
sary for me to repeat them. 

The Hon ble M r Weare, President of New Hampshire, in 
a letter of the 25 th , writes me, " Our General Assembly 
are now convened and have under consideration the im- 
portant matters recommended by General Washington and 
yourself respecting filling up and supplying the army, 
and are determined to take the most vigerous measures 
necessary to accomplish a matter so essential to be done 
at this critical time.' , He then observes that a drove of 
beef cattle of forty five or fifty head will go on this week, 
that another drove is procuring, & c . 

I am happy in the arrangment for the campaign, and 
hope ere long to kiss your hand in camp. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 

esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



224 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, July 4 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have now the honor to enclose 
your Excellency coppy of the proceedings of the conven- 
tion who met at Providence the 26 th ulto. The mode 
adopted for forwarding the supplys of fresh heef dur- 
ing the campaign I hope is reduced to a system which 
will be effectual in its operation, as such as wiil meet your 
approbation. The States are takeing measures to ensure 
a seasonable purchase of the beef. It appearing to the 
convention that the quantity of fresh beef required of the 
State of New Hampshire was greater than their was a 
probability of their furnishing, a transfer of a part of the 
quantity to Massachusetts was made by mutual consent. 
The State of Rhode Island had previous to the meeting 
of the convention ordered 30,000 w fc of fresh beef to be 
forwarded for the month of July which, added to the 
quantity affixed to that State on the inclosed, will make 
their quota 60,000 w\ and the whole 600,000 for the 
month of July. I have been laboring to obtain the ne- 
cessary supply of rum. This is not yet so fully ensured 
as I wish, but is to-day in a more promising way than 
heretofore. The delay has been occasioned by the fluc- 
tuating state of the currency which has been a bar to the 
obtaining the rum, either by purchase or on loan, in this 
State. A resolution of the General Assembly which passed 
the day before yesterday will, I believe, remove the diffi- 
culty and put it in the power of the agent to procure a 
considerable quantity immediately. About twenty hhds. 
of very good Grenada rum of high proof is now going on. 
It will go to Clavarack. As this rum is of a better quality 
than what has or will probably go on, I beg leave to sub- 
mit to your Excellency the directing the commissary gen- 
eral to make a distribution of it to the different parts of 
the army ; otherwise as it will go to Clavarack, and the 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATn. 225 

northern troops by a letter I have lately received from 
M r Commissary Gamble are in great want of rum, the 
greater part of the above mentiond without some partic- 
ular direction will probably be turned to Albany. 

The State agent informed me the last evening that the 
State have about fifty pipes of Tenerriffe wine of a good 
quality. It was to have been sold at vendue. It appears 
it will fetch but a trifle more than American rum. The 
agent is of opinion that this wine will not only be agree- 
able but beneficial to the army, especially to the officers 
and to the hospitals, and the State will be happy to for- 
ward it as rum. The price to the public will be but a 
little more than American rum and much cheaper than 
West India rum. I do not chuse to determine the mat- 
ter myself, altho of opinion it will be very agreable to the 
army, render the supply of rum more ample, and in the 
approaching season contribute to health. The agent has 
concluded not to sell it untill your pleasure is known, and 
will obtain a resolve of the Assembly before they rise, that 
in case your Excellency should think proper to have it 
sent on it shall be done immediately. I request your 
Excellency would give it a consideration, and if you ap- 
prove of its being sent on signify it to Governor Hancock 
as soon as may be convenient, as I shall probably leave 
this before your answer can be received. The wine is 
sold at vendue at about three shillings and 4 d p r gallon in 
specie. Its quality admits of its being exposed to any 
kind of weather without danger of receiving injury. 

A vessel arrived a few days since from Spain, has 
brought a quantity of cloathing for the United States. 
The mortars, cannon, military stores, & c ? are all gone on. 
Col Crane followed them yesterday. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath, 

His Excellency General Washington. 

15 



226 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Aug 8t 24 th , 1781. 

My dear Sir, — His Excellency the Commander in 
Chief has been pleased to honor me with the command 
of all the troops in this department, expressed as follows: 
" You are to take command of all the troops remaining 
in this department, consisting of two regiments of New 
Hampshire, ten of Massachusetts, and five of Connecticut 
infantry, the corps of invalids, Sheldon's legion, the third 
reg* of artillery, together with all such State troops and 
militia as are retained in service, of those which would 
have been under my own command." The army is at 
present encamped at this place. A variety of important 
business will claim our attention at West Point, both for 
the security of the post and comfort of its garrison, which 
I am instructed to keep in all cases equal to its present 
strength. I will therefore thank you for information what 
the strength of the garrison was on the 19 th of this in- 
stant. The completion and repair of the works, maga- 
zines, & c , are an object which require immediate attention, 
and the seasonably securing proper magazines of salted 
provisions, fuel, and forage are objects also to be imme- 
diately pursued. I shall direct the commissaries to en- 
deavor the procurement of the salted provisions. Fuel 
and forage must be obtained by the industry of the 
troops, and I request your exertions to effect it as far as 
is in your power. Fuel should be cut on the margin of 
the river and conveyd to the Point by water. In this busi- 
ness the army here shall assist. As I shall have frequent 
occasions to visit West Point, Verplank's, & c , I will thank 
you to order down the barge with the crew which usually 
attended me, if you can spare it. Any other, either up 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 227 

or down the river, which you chuse shall be at your 
command. 

I am, with very great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

Maj r Gen 1 McDougall. W. HEATH, M. Gen 1 . 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Aug st 25 th , 1781. 

Sir, — His Excellency the Commander in Chief haveing 
crossed Hudson's River with a detachment of the Ameri- 
can army and the whole French army, the command of 
the army in this department devolves on me. This army 
at present consists of the two regiments of New Hamp- 
shire, ten of Massachusetts, five of Connecticut infantry, 
Col Sheldon's reg* of dragoons, the 3 rd reg* of artillery ? 
corps of invalids, and several corps of: levies and militia, 
in addition to which the militia from your Commonwealth 
are soon expected. My command comprehends the 
Northern as well as Eastern Departments, and I am spe- 
cially instructed to pay attention to the security of the 
western and northern frontiers of this State. I hope the 
six hundred militia from your Commonwealth destined 
to Albany have before this time reached that place ; if 
they have not, I request they may be hastened with the 
greatest expedition. Supplies of beef cattle have come 
on from the Eastern States in sufficient quantities to this 
time, and I hope will continue so ; but there is a great 
deficiency in rum. None has yet arrived here from your 
Commonwealth ; the troops suffer exceedingly for want of 
it. The summer clothing sent on for your troops is very 
insufficient. If possible an ample supply should be sent 
on immediately ; but if this cannot be effected the winter 
clothing should be seasonably prepared and sent on, other- 
wise the troops will be in a most wretched condition. 



228 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

From several late accounts we are informed a large 
fleet has been seen standing towards Virginia. Should 
any thing of consequence transpire I shall do myself the 
honor of transmiting your Excellency an account of it. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Aug 5 - 27 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I was yesterday honored with yours of the 23 rd 
p r Major General Parsons. I shall at all times be very 
happy in rendering any service in my power to any 
State in particular, as well as to the United States in 
general, by curbing the excursions of the enemy or 
striking a blow on such of their posts as offer a tollerable 
prospect of success, and I am much obliged by the favor- 
able opinion your Excellency has been pleased to form of 
my disposition for that purpose. But in the case pro- 
posed I cannot all things considered imagine a rational 
prospect of success. If the post at Lloid's Neck could be 
taken by surprise it might invite an attempt, but from 
the nature and situation of the work it is not to be 
expected. To reduce it by regular investiture and can- 
nonade, while the enemy have the superiority both by 
land and water, within a few hours' sail by water, and 
not more than one day and an half march by land, seems 
almost preposterous, especially as General Parsons pro- 
poses to employ for the reduction of the work two 18 p drs , 
two 12 p dra , two threes and two howitz. Should the 
expedition be attempted with such ordnance, it would 
occupy at least three days after the vessels arrive at the 



1781.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 229 

harbour to land the artillery, erect batteries, cannonade 
and reduce the place, reinbarke the artillery, & c , and 
I cannot suppose it possible that the enemy would delay 
affording succour the one half of that time, supposing 
they receive no knowledge of the movement untill the 
troops arrive at the neck. But the preparations for this 
attempt and the sailing of the vessels will take up some 
days, in which we have too much reason to apprehend 
the enemy will get knowledge of the design before it 
can even be attempted. Your Excellency is sensible 
if a post cannot be taken by surprise, and that batteries 
must be opened and heavy ordnance mounted, there 
ought to be a decided superiority on the side of the 
beseigers, not only against the enemy in the post at- 
tacked, but also to those within releiving distance ; other- 
wise defeat, shame, and loss are the certain consequences. 
Upon the whole I am clearly of opinion that the attempt 
as proposed has not a sufficiently well grounded prospect 
of success. If at any time hereafter circumstances should 
offer us an opportunity to give the enemy a blow, at the 
place now proposed or any other, consistant with my 
instructions and duty, I shall most zealously embrace it. 
I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Trumbull. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, September 1 st , 1781. 

Sir, — I have been honored in due time with your favor 

of the 24 th and two of the 29 th ultimo. General Patterson 

J was requested to inform you of the reason of my silence 

and my ideas on the most effectual mode of supplying the 

garrison with wood. It will be to little purpose to cut 



230 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 

wood at any distance from this garrison for its supply, 
as I know it cannot be transported. Several years expe- 
rience convince me of this, and our water craft are in 
worse order, and more difficult to be repaired, than for- 
merly for want of means. Half the wood cut at a dis- 
tance for two years past for the post has not been 
transported to it before winter. For these reasons the 
wood to supply this garrison must be cut as near as pos- 
sible to it to shorten and facilitate the transportation. 
And as the scows will greatly contribute to this the wide 
bays must be avoided. The returns sent herewith will 
inform you of the strength of the garrison, but there are 
numerous commands stated as present which cannot be 
of any aid to the garrison if the enemy attempt it by 
surprize, and we have no occasion to fear any other 
attack. • 

For this reason, and as I know the guard boats are of 
little or no security to the posts, the guards in the ad- 
vanced works are strong, and the other duty of the post 
very considerable. In this state of the garrison two hun- 
dred men cannot be spared, nor is that number necessary, 
for they will at a cord per day a man cut 18,000 to the 
first of December, a quarter part of which will not be 
transported before that day. 

The Boston invalids are stationed at Fish Kill, and it 
must be by their carelessness the beacon was fired. The 
detachment they releived had a guard at the beacon, and 
the officer who commanded was particularly instructed to 
give the releiving officer all the information in his power 
of the duty of the post and to be very particular in it. The 
invalids are a mere burden to the post, and when they 
and militia garrison the key of America, it is a shameful 
evidence of her inertion. 

Colonel Weissenfels' regiment of new levies at Fish 
Kill wait your orders. A return of his strength and 
points on which he wants direction are inclosed. All the 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 231 

artificers the garrison can spare will be furnished the 
D. Q. M. General, and whatever is in the power of 
the garrison for the accomplishments of the objects you 
mention will be attended to. 

I have the honor to be your humble servant. 

Alex* M c Dougall. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sept. 2 nd , 1781. 

My dear Sir, — I was yesterday honored with yours 
of the 1 st . I agree with you that it will be best to cut 
large quantities of wood as convenient to the garrison as 
possible, as well as some on the margin of the river above 
and below the Point. The number of wood cutters were 
estimated by Col Hughes, who represented three hun- 
dred as absolutely necessary for the cutting of wood, tim- 
ber, & c , & c . From the great number of militia that have 
and are to collect at West Point, I conceived 200 might 
easily be spared and employed. Those who are assigned 
to cut wood on the east side nearly opposite the garrison 
may be considered as almost within it. I shall order one 
or two regiments of regular troops to reinforce your gar- 
rison. The militia which have already come in will be 
much encreased. A large proportion of them will be as- 
signed to the garrison, and should the enemy at any time 
make a movement that should indicate a design against the 
posts in the Highlands they will be immediately covered 
by a part or the whole of the army as may be necessary, for 
which purpose I shall always occupy a post that will en- 
able me to effect it. Col Webb's reg* of Massachusetts 
militia is to be formed here where a part of them have 
already arrived. I request you will order such as have 
or may arrive at West Point belonging to that reg* to 
this place. Colonel Weissenfels' reg fc shall be ordered to 



232 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

the army or the garrison, as you think will be most con- 
ducive to the service. If the latter, Cap* Hunt's com- 
pany may remain on the lines, where it may be very 
serviceable. His Excellency Governor Clinton has this 
day represented the reg fc as a very good one. 

But little active service can be expected from the in- 
valids. They may be of essential service in defence of 
works. When Col Weissenfels' reg* moves from Fishkill, 
if they have been doing duty there, and the invalids are 
not a sufficient guard for the stores, please order such de- 
tachment as may be necessary. I wish to know your 
opinion of the best destination for Col Weissenfels' reg* 
as soon as may be convenient. Altho your calculation of 
the quantity of wood which at a cord a day may be cut 
before December, I believe, if we may judge from the ex- 
perience of former years, not one quarter of that quantity 
will be cut. 

I shall order the 7 th Massachusetts reg* to the Point the 
day after to-morrow if vessels or boats can be obtained to 
transport their baggage, & c . 

Robertson's New York paper of the 30 th ult° gives an 
account that last Tuesday morning Rear Admiral Sir 
Sam 1 Hood arrived at Sandy Hook from the West Indies 
with 14 sail of the line, four frigates, a sloop, and fire- 
ship, — the Barfleur of 90 guns and thirteen of 74, three 
of 44, one of 28, a sloop and fire ship. On board the fleet 
came the first battalion of the Royal, the 13 th and 69 th 
reg ts . These reg ts probably are much reduced by sickness 
in the West Indies. 

I have the honor to be, with very great regard, dear 

Sir, 

Your obed fc seiV. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

P. S. Yours of this date, with the return of militia, is 

this moment come to hand. 

W. H. 

Major Gen 1 Mc Doug all. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 233 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sep* 2 nd , 1781. 

Dear General, — I was the last evening honored with 
yours of the 29 th ulto. The dispatches for the eastern 
States will be forwarded this day. A gentleman who 
returned with a flag from the enemies' guard ships this 
morning informs me that the British officers told him 
a fleet of upwards twenty sail of men of war had arrived 
at New York, another officer said seventeen sail. I am 
this moment informed by another person that the fleet 
consists of fourteen sail of the line under the command 
of Admiral Hood, and that four thousand Hessian troops, 
very sickly, have arrived in the fleet. This last account 
is brought by a person who is lately exchanged, perhaps 
he may be mistaken as to the troops, who may possibly 
be those who arrived some time since. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv\ 

W. Heath. 

P. S. The British officer told the gentleman who w T as 
down with the flag that you had march to save Phila- 
delphia, which was threatned by Lord Cornwallis who 
was within thirty miles of it. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THOMAS McKEAN* 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sep 4 5 th , 1781. 

Sir, — His Excellency the Commander in Chief of the 
armies of the United States of America having gone to 

* Thomas McKean was born in New London, Chester County, Penn., March 19, 1734, 
and died in Philadelphia June 2-4, 1817. He received a good educa ion in his native town 



234 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

the southward, the command of the army, posts and garri- 
sons in this department devolve on me. The army at 
present consists of two regiments of New Hampshire, 
ten of Massachusetts and five of Connecticut infantry, 
the 2 nd reg* light dragoons, 3 rd reg* of artillery, invalid 
regiment, and several corps of levies and militia. I have 
the honor enclosed to present to the Hon ble the Congress 
returns of the regular troops under my command, con- 
formable to the act of Congress of the 3 rd October, 1780. 
This return should have been made more punctually as 
to the time, but the movements of the army, and my but 
just receiving the command has prevented. I hope the 
candor of Congress will excuse it. By this same con- 
veyance the monthly returns are sent, as far as have 
been collected ; those from Albany have not been ob- 
tained, probably they have been sent to the Adj* 
General of the army. It will be the endeavour of the 
D. A. Gen 1 to have the next returns as perfect as 
possible. 

In a letter which I had the honor to receive a few 
days since from his Excellency General Washington, 
dated at Trenton the 29 th ulto., he was pleased to in- 
form me that four hundred militia from the State of 
New Hampshire, eighteen hundred from Massachusetts, 
fourteen hundred from Connecticut, and five hundred 
from New Jersey, being two thirds the number originally 
called for, were still requested for my aid. These are 
daily coming in. 

I have for the present taken a position at this place as 
being the best situated to cover the important posts in 
the Highlands, which I view as the first and principal 
object, and at the same time to cover the country and 

and was admitted to the bar before he became of age. His public life began almost im- 
mediately afterward; and after filling numerous inferior positions he was, from 1774 till 
1783, a member of the Continental Congress from Delaware. From 1777 to 1799 he was 
Chief Justice of Pennsylvania, while holding other offices in Delaware. See Appleton'3 
Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. iv. pp. 127, 128. — Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATII. 235 

lend aid to the militia on either side of the Hudson, 
should the enemy attempt any excursions from New 
York. I shall endeavour also to pay particular attention 
to the northern district of this State, and have written 
to General Stark for a minute state of affairs in that 
quarter. This army have at present a tollerable supply 
of flour for immediate use, and an ample supply of 
fresh beef, but the importance of West Point and its 
dependencies require that ample magazines of flour and 
salted provisions should be deposited there for any emer- 
gency that may happen to effect it. No exertions of 
mine shall be wanting, but without the support of Con- 
gress all my exertions will be ineffectual. I therefore 
beg leave to submit this important object to their con- 
sideration, that effectual measure may be adopted. 

Forage I am apprehensive will be very difficult, if 
possible, to be obtained without some special aid from 
Congress. I am at present drawing forage from below 
the army, but the quantities on the lines will not be 
more than sufficient for a temporary supply. His Ex- 
cellency Governor Clinton in a letter to me of the l 8t 
inst. observes, — " There have not been any requisitions 
for forage made on this State, and I presume the neces- 
sary supply can be obtained in no other way than by 
purchase." Thus circumstanced Congress will see our 
situation, and I hope in some way afford seasonable 
relief. The condition of the army as to pay and cloth- 
ing is fully known to Congress and while I filicitate Con- 
gress and my country on the reported success of Col 
Laurens' embassy I flatter myself the army will soon 
experience the happy effects of it, both in pay and 
clothing, at the same time that it establishes the finances 
of our country on a perminant basis. 

I pray your Excellency will be pleased to assure Con- 
gress that it will be the heigth of my ambition to execute 
their commands whenever signified, and I beg leave to 



23G THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

submit my present command, which is both extensive 
and expensive, to their consideration. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant, 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I request Congress to favor me with such of 
their acts and resolutions as respect the army. 

7 o'clock p. m. 

I am this moment informed that yesterday at 12 o'clock 
a fleet of about 26 sail, some of them large vessels, passed 
by Stamford to the eastward, but whether they were 
merchant ships or transports with troops my informant 
does not mention. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Thomas McKean, Esquire, President of Congress. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sep* 7 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I did my self the honor of writing 
your Excellency yesterday by M r Flint, who was on his 
way to the army. This will probably reach you sooner. 
The southern post rider was undoubtedly taken on Mon- 
day last near Pompton, and the mail carried off; this 
probably will furnish M r Rivington with materials for 
some weeks to come. 

On the 4 th at 12 o'.clock a fleet of about 26 sail, some 
of them large vessells, passed by Stamford to the east- 
ward ; but whether they had troops on board or not 
my informant did not mention. It is said Admiral Sir 
Samuel Hood has put to sea with 16 sail of the line. 

The last evening I received information from Cap* 
Pray at the block house, that all the enemy's guard 
ships in the North River abo\e Fort Washington had 
gone down the river ; not a vessel was to be seen. Cap fc 



1781.] JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 237 

Pray was going down to make further discoveries. It is 
reported an embargo is takeing place in New York. We 
have no other news at present. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



JONATHAN TRUMBULL TO WILLIAM HEATH.* 

Hartford, 7 th Sep*, 1781. 

Sir, — The enemy yesterday made a descent upon the 
town of New London, and by the advices I have received 
are about 2,000 men, besides a body of light horse, per- 
haps 300, about 40 ships of war & transports. By this 
enterprize they have posses'd of the only harbour of im- 
portance within this State and property to a very great 
amount, perhaps 400,000 pounds. Norwich, about four- 
teen miles up the river,- is an object of very great impor- 
tance, & I fear will be destroyd. We shall use our utmost 
efforts to save that town, which is the most we can expect 
to accomplish. As desultory expeditions are without a 
doubt meditated upon different parts of this State, I must 
beg you to order part of the troops under your command 
to such stations as will give some protection to the western 
parts of the State. New Haven is an object of great con- 
sequence, and I have reason to fear an attempt will be 
made to destroy it. Three hundred men, if you cannot 
spare us more, will be of essential service in this day of 
distress. These being disciplined troops will serve as a 
body to which the militia can collect & form. The guards 
under Colonel Putnam & Col. Sheldon may render essen- 
tial service on the western coast of the State if the enemy 

* Heath's answer to this letter is printed in 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iii. pp. 270- 
272. — Eds. 



238 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

should attempt the destruction of those towns. I must 
therefore intreat you to give orders to those troops to 
march to the coast on any demonstration the enemy may 
make of an attack. Your readiness to assist any of the 
States in repeling the invasions of the enemy leaves me 
no room to doubt of your affording us any assistance in 
your power. 

General Parsons who was returning to camp, I have 
desired to remain in the State for the present. 
I am, with esteem & respect, 

Your most obed* serv*. 

Jon th Trumbull. 

Maj r General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO RUFUS PUTNAM. 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sep* 8 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — I have this moment received information, 
that a body of the enemy have landed at New London, 
and were plundering if not burning the town ; as their 
barbarity may lead them to perpetrate the same cruelties 
along the Sound, in order to afford aid and give counte- 
nance to the militia, I have determined to put a part of 
your detachment in motion towards Stanford, that they 
may be within relieving distance should the enemy 
attempt any thing in that quarter. You will therefore 
please early in the morning to detach Major Tallmadge 
and Trescot w T ith twenty mounted dragoons and two 
hundred infantry, with two days' provisions. And it 
may be well for your commissaries' assistant to go with 
them with a small quantity of provisions in reserve to 
move on towards Stanford. If Major Tallmadge should 
hear the enemy have returned he will return ; if not let 
him remain a few days in the vicinity of Canaan or some 
where thereabouts. During the absence of this part of 



i 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATH. 239 

your detachment you will act with great precaution and 
let me know if further reinforcement be necessary for 
you. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obedient serv*. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Col Putnam. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Peekskill, Sep* 9 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I was the last evening honored with 
yours of the 4 th , to which I shall pay attention as it 
respects placing persons at the ferries to intercept desert- 
ers and forwarding cattle. 

I mentioned in mine of the 7 th that a fleet of 26 sail 
passed Stanford to the eastward on the 4 th . I have 
received no official accounts since, but a paper handed 
from the militia of one town to another reached me yes- 
terday, of which the enclosed is coppy, on which I 
ordered two hundred regular troops to move towards 
Stanford, that in case the enemy should have designs of 
burning the seaport towns on the Sound on their return, 
the regular troops may be at hand to give countenance 
to the militia. I have also received intelligence from 
Albany that some parties from Canada are to make an 
attempt by surprise to burn that city, to prevent which I 
have ordered two companies of Wiessinfels' reg* of levies 
to that place. We are busily employed in moveing off the 
forage from below, and now and then catch some of the 
Cow Boys. The naval force of our illustrious ally being 
so greatly superior to that of the British, whose fleet by 
their own acco* is but nineteen sail of the line, will I 

* Washington's answer to this letter and the letter of September 12 is printed in 5 Mass. 
Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 222, 223. — Eds. 



240 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

apprehend prevent the enemy makeing any manoeuvres 
to the southward to divert the blow impending over 
Lord Cornw r allis; but suppose Sir Henry will be active in 
this quarter. It is hinted to me that he will. I shall 
endeavour that he does not outgeneral me. As the pri- 
mary object I shall (be his movements what they may) 
cover the posts in the Highlands, and if he attempts to 
plunder or burn in Connecticut or the Jersies, as he 
probably will, with design to draw of my principal force, 
employ such detachments only to aid the militia as will 
not endanger the posts. 

The shipping in the harbour by my last accounts 
were principally collected between the city and Gibbit 
Island. 

I am informed that coppy of a general order respect g 
Cap* Livermore and Major Murnan was sent to me, it 
probably was taken with the southern mail ; it has not 
come to hand. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



RICHARD PETERS TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

War Office, Sept r 11, 1781. 

Sir, — The bearer waits on you with instructions from 
the Honble. Robert Morris, Esq., Superintendant of 
Finance, relative to the transport of the specie lately 
arrived at Boston. The route will be pointed out in 
those instructions. You will be pleased to detach to 
Boston a captain, two subs., and the proper number of non 
com d officers, with thirty six light dragoons as an escort. 
You will be pleased to furnish the commanding officer of 
this detachment with the necessary orders to perform all 



1781.] RICHARD PETERS. 241 

the military duty required for the safety of the money, 
taking the advice of the bearer as to the route and other 
matters essential to the bussiness and, lest there should 
be any difficulties on this subject, we beg you to send a 
prudent officer properly informed that the bearer, being 
answerable for the charge committed to him, is to be con- 
sulted upon every occasion not of a military nature. He 
is furnished with the means of supporting the escort. 
We presume that it will be necessary to have about one 
hundred foot properly officered in addition to the horse. 
You will please to adjust with the bearer the time and 
place when and where the infantry shall join the escort on 
the return from Boston and how far they shall proceed on 
the way to Philadelphia. Should you deem a greater 
number of horse or foot necessary we leave you at liberty 
to add to the numbers required. We are averse upon 
common occasions from diminishing your operating force ; 
but this bussiness is so important that we beg you to 
afford the assistance requested. It will be also necessary 
that you have the dangerous country thro' N. York and 
Jersey covered by strong detachments on the enemy's 
lines during the passage of the treasure thro' those 
parts. 

We have been honoured with your letters of the 31 st 
ulto. and 5 th inst., and shall lay the subjects of them 
before Congress and duly inform you of the result. 

We have the honour to be, with much respect and 
esteem, 

Your very obed. servants. 

Richard Peters, 
By Order 

P. S. The gentleman appointed by M r Morris is 

Tench Francis, Esq r , to whom as well as Major Nicholas, 

who accompanies him, we request your attention in the 

prosecution of their bussiness. 

Honble. Major General Heath. 

16 



242 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

JOHN STARK* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Saratoga, 11 th Sept r , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Yours of the 3 d and 7 th inst 8 are now 
before me ; the former was rec d last evening, and the 
other this day. By your not acknowledging the rec* of 
my former letters, I am led to believe you never rec d 
them, but certainly they must have reached you before 
this. In them you will find the reason of my not send- 
ing you a return, and the same difficulty that then exist- 
ed is not yet removed, therefore you must not expect a 
return, untill the materials are supplied to make it with. 
However, I can tell the numbers in the garrison, which 
consists of 2 majors, 7 capt 8 , 11 subs., 27 seajt 8 ; and 
360 rank and file. We have about ten rounds of car- 
tridges per man, and no more ammunition in store. I 
wrote to General Knox for a supply some time ago, but 
have neither rec d the ammunition nor an answer, but I 
hope for them every hour. I have no Dep y Aj* General, 
nor have I one that I can appoint, capable of the busi- 
ness, who is willing to undertake it : be assured, Sir, 
that whenever you shall think proper to send me a 
supply of paper and appoint a Dep y Adj* General, either 
from your army or some one that you know in this dis- 
trict, the business shall be done regularly and I hope to 
your satisfaction, but till then I cannot tell how it will be 
transacted. 

You will percieve by the number of men in this garri- 
son that it would be very imprudent to detatch any of 
them to Albany, but I expect a few more militia in every 
day ; notwithstanding this, I cannot think myself justi- 
fiable to spare any men from this or any of the frontiers 
(without your positive order) untill we are much stronger 
than we are now. And indeed was I ever so strong, 
Albany is a very dangerous place to trust men in, for 

* For a Life of John Stark, by Edward Everett, see Sparks's American Biography, 
vol. i. pp- 3-116. — Eds. 



1781.] JOHN STARK. 243 

was I to send a company there I should expect they 
would have one half of them in jail, and the other half to 
keep them there, in less than a month ; for I inform you, 
Sir, that they have more than one continental soldier in 
jail for depts or pretended depts already, and now they 
are calling for more, perhaps for the same purpose. It 
appears to me, Sir, that some villains have determined to 
try whither they can detain a continental soldier in jail 
for dept or not, and by the assistance those patriotic gen- 
tlemen have had from the magistrates of Albany, they 
have been enabled to carry their nefarious plan into exe- 
cution. Further, Sir, Albany is able to turn out 500 men 
for their own defence, and a larger body than 50 cannot 
well come against them, and if ten virtuous citizens 
is not able to defend themselves against the assaults of 
one sculking rascall of a Tory or an Indian, it is very 
remarkable, especially as they have got forts, and walls 
to cover them, almost beyond the power of human force 
to shake. But, my dear Sir, if you have any men to 
spare from the army, I expect they will soon be wanted 
at this place, as I have this day almost certain intel- 
ligence of their being a large detatchment of the enemy 
at S* Johns destined for this quarter ; perhaps they may 
come before you can possibly send me any assistance, but 
I hope not. 

I am sorry, Sir, that among the rest of my calamities 
(which are all occationed by poverty) it is not in my 
power to send an express forty miles, unless by dispatch- 
ing a soldier on foot with his provision on his back : and 
in case the enemy should approach I shall be under the 
necessity (if possible) to send expresses to Hampshire 
and Berkshire counties, to Albany, and to the Grants ; 
this business, Sir, will require good horses and horsemen, 
and neither of them is to be had here ; and was there any 
horses there is no money to pay their expences nor 
forrage to keep them on, nor none of either can I get. I 



244 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

have applied to the Governor for forrage, but he says 
that Congress has not required it of the State, and with- 
out that requisition lie cannot give a warrant to impress 
it, and that he supposes that Congress has lodged money 
in the hands of the proper officers, to procure it. 

I am, dear Sir, with the greatest respect and esteem, 
Your most obedient and very h e ser\ 

John Stark. 

Major Gen 1 Heath. 



ROBERT MORRIS* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Office of Finance, Philadelphia, Sept. 11 th , 1781. 

Sir, — Enclosed is an order from the Board of War to 
send a party of dragoons to Boston to escort thence a con- 
siderable sum of money belonging to the United States, 
which I trust you will comply with in the manner most 
proper. M r Francis, the bearer of this letter, is charged 
with the care of the transportation, and now waits upon you 
to concert such measures as may be necessary. 

I also enclose an extract from my instructions to M r 
Francis, which will place you in a situation to give him 
the occasional directions which he may stand in need of, 
or w T hich the motions of the enemy or other circumstances 
may require. I would recommend secrecy, and mention 
that the interests of the United States and of the army 
require the greatest care to be used with respect to this 
money ; but your character, Sir, renders every such 
caution unnecessary, for I am convinced that you will be 
as forcibly impressed with those sentiments as I can be. 

I am very respectfully, Sir, 

Your most obed*, humble serv*. 

Eob t Morris. 

Honb le General Heath. 
* For a notice of Robert Morris, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iii. p. 225 n. — Eds. 



1781.] INSTRUCTIONS TO TENCH FRANCIS. 24 i 



EXTRACT FROM INSTRUCTIONS TO TENCH FRANCIS. 

Inclosed you have an order to General Heath for 
an escort of dragoons, who will proceed to Boston so as 
to be ready to set off by the time you shall have got 
every thing in readiness, which I hope and expect will 
be very speedily. I presume that General Heath will 
give the proper orders to the officer commanding the es- 
cort, for mounting guards where you stop and taking 
proper positions along the road • but if any thing of this 
sort should be omitted, you will yourself apply to the 
officer on the subject; and, lest he should conceive an 
impropriety in the application, shew this letter to him, 
and request his particular care and attention. 

From Boston to Philadelphia the following rout is 
recommended to me, which may nevertheless be altered, 
as time and circumstances shall require, for greater safety. 
From Boston to Worcester, to Springfield, to Green- 
wood, to Salisbury, to Fishkill, to New Windsor or 
Newburgh, to Sussex Court House or Newton, to Easton, 
to Philadelphia. 

When you shall have arrived at Salisbury you will send 
to Gen 1 Heath and let him know your intended rout, that 
he may take such positions from time to time as will 
cover you perfectly ; and also, that he may give you his 
directions as to what may be proper for you to do in 
order to avoid all risque ; which directions you will 
comply with. 

I think it would be useful that while you are in the 
dangerous parts of the States of New York and New 
Jersey, you should be escorted by an additional number of 
dragoons and also by a party of infantry ; but I shall 
submit this to General Heath, who will be the best judge. 
At any rate it will be usefull that the teams men be armed 
each with a good musket and bayonet ; because they may 



246 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

then assist the cavalry in case of an attack. The arms 
may be furnished for this purpose from the public maga- 
zines, and they may be again lodged in the public maga- 
zines here. 

Should you upon information find that the weight I 
propose will be by any means inconvenient or productive 
of delay, let the smaller boxes contain a lesser quantity 
so as to accomodate the matter better and increase the 
number of teams proportionately. On the road from 
Boston you will pay the expences of the escort, &c, and 
you will study to render the expence as light as possible. 
It may be useful to encourage the guard with the hope 
of reward ; if upon information you find it proper you 
may on my part promise one month's pay in specie on 
their arrival at this place. 

Keep all your motions and intentions secret, and give 
out that you mean to go from Springfield to Claverack, 
from Claverack to Rhinebeck, from Rhinebeck to Esopus, 
from Esopus to Minisink, from Mini sink to Easton, and 
when you quit the rout to go to Fishkill, move with as much 
rapidity as your cattle will permit. Take care therefore 
to have good cattle and spare them in the begining of 
the route. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 
Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep 1 12 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have this day been honored with 
yours of the 7, permit me to felicitate your Excellency 
on the promising prospects of success which seem to be 
almost within your grasp, — may Heaven crown your 
most sanguine expectations. One hundred beef cattle 
went from hence this day for the army under your im- 
mediate command : they will be followed by a like 
number weekly. Attention shall be paid to the small 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 247 

clothing mentioned if any has or shall come on, and to 
deserters. 

The enemy have destroyed a considerable part of the 
town of New London and killed a number of its vallueable 
inhabitants, among whom are Colonel Ledyard, Cap 1 
Saltonstall, Richardson and others ; the militia turned 
out with spirit and tis said behaved gallantly. I have 
obtained no official accounts, and those brought by others 
are as various as the persons who relate them. The 
enclosed from Gen 1 Huntington came to hand this even- 
ing. I had detached him with three hundred men to cover 
Major Tallmade, who I had pushed towards New Haven 
upon the first official intelligence I received from Gov- 
ernor Trumbull of the enemy's depredations. I believe 
the movements of the troops have saved Stamford and the 
adjoining towns, and prevented another detachment of 
the enemy moving from Kingsbridge to meet those com- 
ing down the Sound by water. Worm and Delancey are 
said to have been for several days shoeing their horses, & c . 
Sir Henry Clinton is in great rage, but knows not how to 
vent it ; it is said he has called out the militia, is collect- 
ing his forces, and is determined to make one great effort 
in favor of Lord Cornwallis, and that he intends to move 
somewhere with six or seven thousand men. The Jer- 
sies are hinted, and some conjecture Philadelphia ; his 
designs may be against the important posts in the High- 
lands, and his late manoeuvres aimed to draw my force 
from them that he may suddenly push up the said river, 
his bait will not be taken. I shall effectually cover the 
posts, shall besides lend such detachments as can safely 
be spared to give countenance to the militia where he 
may direct his desultry operations and possibly gore his 
sides. I think the two companies sent to Albany will 
secure that quarter. I have removed the army to Bald 
Hill and thrown a reinforcement into the garrison of 
West Point. My present position effectually covers the 






248 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

posts in the Highlands and affords me a better opper- 
tunity to make detachments with safety to such places 
as the movements of the enemy rmay require. M r Riv- 
ington saies Admiral Digby is soon expected with a 
powerfull squadron in these seas. 

M r Pomroy, the D. Q. M. at Hartford, informs me that 
a quantity of salted provisions some time since shiped 
at Hartford for Rhode Island to take the advantage of 
the French convoy to the southward arrived too late ; 
the fleet had sailed. He is applying to me for directions 
what to do with it. I will thank your Excellency for 
directions, which shall be communicated to M r Pomeroy. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



JOHN HANCOCK TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Boston, September 12 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have had the honor of your letters of 25 th of 
August, 2 d , 3 d , 6 th , and 7 th of September, and am much 
pleased that during the absence of the illustrious Com- 
mander in Chief at the southward, the command of the 
army in the Eastern and Northern Department rests 
with you, confident I am that your attention, vigilance 
and military abilities and exertions will derive honor to 
yourself, and be productive of much advantage to our 
country. 

I have not yet received regular returns respecting the 
march of the men for three months, but from the re- 
peated orders I have given, I must suppose that the 
whole of them by this time are at or near the place of 
their destination, as also those destined for Albany. I 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 249 

am happy to find that the supply of beef is so regular and 
in sufficient quantities, and from the assurances given 
me by our purchasing commissary M r Phelps, I think I 
can venture to say that the supply will be as regular in 
succeeding months. 

Our Assembly meets this day, and I shall lay before 
them your letter respecting the cloathing for our troops, 
and will acquaint you as early as possible with their 
resolutions on the subject. 

A quantity of rum has laid some time at Springfield for 
want of the means of transportation ; however, I have at 
length put it in motion, and I hope some will very quickly 
be with you. The salted provisions have also been or- 
dered on, and I think must be arrived with you before 
this reaches you. 

I am much obliged by your frequent communications 
of public intelligence. You may depend that I shall not 
fail upon all occasions to communicate to you every 
occurrence of an interesting nature, and with respect to 
any matters in reference to the army, yourself, or the 
public that may depend on any influence or exertions of 
mine, upon your signifying to me your wish, you shall 
find an instant attention, and as far as in my power 
speedy compliance. 

I wish you very happy, and am, with real and un- 
feigned esteem, dear Sir, 

Your most obed* serv*. 

Hon! Major General Heath. JOHN HANCOCK. 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Canaan, Sept r 13 th , 1781. 

Dear Gen l , — I was very happy in receiving your 
orders of the 11 th instf on the evening of the same day. 



250 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

At 2 o'clock in the morn g of the 12 th the detachment 
under my command marched from Bedford New Purchase 
(to which place we had returnd) towards Stamford, where 
from the very pressing information I had rec d I fully be- 
lieved the enemy had landed. I halted before the troops 
had reached the town, and found that the fleet which 
the night before had anchored off Stamford had weighed 
anchor and stood over to Long Island. After this the 
greatest part of them stood westward, some remained in 
Huntington Bay, and some square-rigged vessels sailed 
eastward. Under these circumstances I moved the troops 
to this place as a more centrical position. I am a little 
at a loss to conjecture what the next movements of the 
enemy will be ; some suppose that the warm reception 
they met with at New London will induce them to give 
over any further attempts on the coast, while others are 
full in opinion that they have retired a little to the west- 
ward to give time for the militia to return home, and 
then prosecute the original plans of their expedition, 
which I am well convinced was to burn the towns on 
the seacoast of this State. 

I have this morning confered with Gen 1 Huntington 
on the subject, who recommends that while he returns 
with his brigade, we should tarry in this quarter a day 
or two longer, when the enemies' intentions will be more 
fully discovered. 

When I last had the honor of seeing you, I mentioned 
the possibility of striking the enemy in some of their de- 
tached posts on Long Island, and was happy to find in 
you a disposition to accomplish it. I have had accounts 
from that quarter yesterday, and find that the enemy 
are about to establish a post at a place called Smith 
Town, on Long Island, nearly opposite to Norwalk, which 
if effected will greatly distress the inhabitants on both 
shoars, and I fear compleatly ruin my chain of secret 
intelligence. I have got the person who was employed 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 251 

by them to lay out the ground fully in my interest, and 
expect very soon to hear further from him, and if 40, 
60, or 100 men should undertake to erect works at that 
place, it would give me infinite satisfaction to have the 
pimission of my Gen 1 to beat up their quarters. I am 
also informed that there is a considerable detachment of 
troops coming down the island to forage. This will be 
another object of consequence, and if prudently managed, 
I have no doubt they might be attacked with success. 
Fort Slongo on Treadwell's bank, and Fort Franklin on 
Loyd's neck (against which the French undertook an 
enterprize) I cannot believe impregnable. I should be 
happy to undertake an enterprize against either of them. 
At any rate a stroke upon either of those detachments 
of the enemy might serve as a diversion in our favour, 
whilst they are meditating a movement either into the 
Jersies or to the eastward. The moment I hear from my 
agent I shall be much better able to judge, and in the 
mean time shall be perfectly ready for a movement. I 
shall have no difficulty on ace* of provision. 

I have to have some private intelligence for you very 
shortly. Inclosed is a letter from a very confidential 
agent, which was delayed arriving in season by the de- 
fection of the two men now in your provost. If either 
of those men should be deemed objects of mercy, Flan- 
ders bears the best character. Brown is undoubtedly 
ruined. 

I am, my dear General, with sentiments of the greatest 
regard, 

Your most obed* serv*. 

Benj a Tallmadge, 

Gen 1 Heath. 



252 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



SECRET INFORMATION FROM NEW YORK* 

Sir, — I have it now in my power to asure you that 
the troops who arrived last at N. Y. were directly from 
Germany, consisting of rather better than two thou- 
sand recruits, to fill up the Hessian regiments ; they are 
very sickly, and die fast. The British fleet has arived, 
from where not known. One thing, however, you may 
take for granted, and that is that they are in very bad 
order. The Roebuck has not yet returnd from Halifax 
where she went to repair. The Robust lies at the ship 
yards condemn d and is soon to go to England with her 
lower deck guns only. The Prudent, of 64 guns, lies at 
the yards ; they began to repair her, but on strict ex- 
amination she was condemned, and is to go home with 
the Robust. The above account of the shipping is true, 
and I give you the information from my having been an 
eye witness of it. And as to their going home under the 
sentence of condemnation, I could site the most incontest- 
able evidence. The situation of the troops in and about 
N. Y. is the same as in my last. There are not more 
than 300 troops on Staten Island. The militia are out 
frequently, and often reviewed by the Gov r and com- 
mandant, who put much dependence upon them in case 
of an invasion (they do constant duty in town), but 
should that time ever happen, which God send, you may 
rely upon it that their officers will not dare command 
them. The militia of King's, and Queen's County may 
be active, unless they should be panic struck which is 
very probable. Upon the whole I think you have but 
little to fear from exersions from any quarter, unless they 
have a reinforcement. There are only 4 sail of the line 
now at N. Y., and as to any assistance from puting trans- 

* Enclosed in Major Tallmadge's letter of September 13. — Eds. 



. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 253 

ports into the service to act as sloops of war, they pos- 
itively can have none for want of men to man them. 

Liberty is granted to the refugees to come upon the 
farms of those who have stayed peaceably at home, for 
the purpose of cutting wood for government, paying five 
pounds an acre for the wood standing. About 300 of 
them are going to establish a post at Stony-brook Har- 
bour near Smith Town for that purpose. Should they 
get footing they will distress the inhabitants exceedingly, 
and from their situation and strength may give you much 
trouble. 

I am, with esteem, your humble serv*. 

S. G. 

August 28, 1781. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep 4 14, 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of yesterday came safe to hand. 
I approve the steps you have taken with your detach- 
ment, and thank you for the intelligence communicated. 
It is my wish not only to curb the enemy in their 
excursions, but to strike any of their posts or detach- 
ments that afford a good prospect of success, and I shall 
be very happy in improving you as an instrument at 
such places as you may think practicable, without risk- 
ing too much. The intended post at Smith Town and 
probably several others may be carried without much 
loss. The fort at Lloyd's neck I am rather apprehensive 
will be more difficult to carry by assault, which you are 
sensible must be the mode with respect to any of the 
enemy's posts or detachments on Long Island, untill we 
have a superiority by water. But where ever you think 
an attempt will succeed you may depend on my con- 
currence. Of your designs please from time to time to 
advise me. Please also to collect all the intelligence 
possible of the enemies' posts and numbers. Probably 






254 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

we may strike them in more places than one ; would it 
be practicable for a detachment in boats to pass down to 
Morrissania and land below Delancey's corps to cut off 
his retreat while another proceed by land ; think of this 
and let me know your opinion. However, let not this 
delay any thing else you have now ready or nearly ready 
to be attempted. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, your obed fc serv\ 

W. Heath, M. Gen 1 . 

P. S. Do you wish to have the letter you enclosed 
sent back? if you do, it shall be done in my next. 

W. H. 

Major Tallmadge. 



JONATHAN TRUMBULL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Hartford, Sep r 15 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I received your favour of the 10 th ins* this morn- 
ing, and improve the earliest opportunity to express the 
high sense we have of the obligations which your vigi- 
lance and attention to the protection of this State in the 
late invasion of the enemy has laid us under, and have 
the fullest relyance on your future exertions as far as 
your sittuation and a necessary attention to the important 
posts under your command will admit. 

The enemies' expedition to New London was conducted 
with so much secrecy and the attack so sudden and un- 
expected that no succour could be seasonably afforded, 
notwithstanding the spirited exertions of the militia who 
turned out with readiness. We have put the seacoast in 
as good a posture of defence as our circumstances will per- 
mit, and shall be ver^ attentive in forwarding the earliest 
inteligence of any movement of the enemy that may come 
to my knowledge. 

Gen 1 Parsons is gone to the westward, and will com- 
municate the powers and instructions which he has re- 



!, 



1781.] WILLIAM LIVINGSTON. 255 

ceived, and wish that the troops under your command and 
the militia of this State might be so arranged as to co- 
opperate to the best advantage and most effectually to 
counteract and annoy the enemy. 

I know not from what cause yours of the 3 d ins* did 
not come to hand untill the afternoon of this day. I 
thank you for the intelligence it contains. 

I am, with sentiments of esteem & regard, dear General, 
Your obedient, humble servant. 

Jon th Trumbull. 

Maj r General Heath. 

WILLIAM LIVINGSTON * TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Trenton, 15 Sepr., 1781. 

Sir, — I have received your favour of the 4 th instant; 
and was before the receipt of it honoured with a letter 
from General Washington, acquainting me that upon his 
going to the southward, the command of the army to the 
northward had devolved upon you. 

I hope with you, Sir, that the army you command is 
sufficient to secure the important posts in the Highlands, 
and with the exertions of the neighbouring States in a 
good degree to check the excursions of the enemy from 
New York. 

By the last returns I had of what we call our three 
months men, I doubt not the five hundred are by this 
time complete. They are under the command of Coll 
Sylvanus Seely, whose head quarters are at Connecticut 
Farms, about four miles from Elizabeth Town, and about 
seven from Staten Island. From these he keeps constant 
out posts and pickets along the lines, to prevent the 
incursions of the enemy, and to suppress the illicit in- 
fernal trade that is carried on with them. He cannot, I 
think, be more advantageously posted in any part of this 

* For a notice of Governor Livingston, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. 424 n. — Eds. 



256 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

State for either of those purposes ; and we should be 
very unhappy to think that he should be ordered out of 
it, not only because the men were expressly raised upon 
General Washington's requisition, grounded upon his 
professed design to attack New York, but also because, 
not being able to complete our quota from the militia, I 
ordered several companies of our State regiment then on 
those lines, and raised for the very purpose of defending 
our frontiers, to join him ; and which accordingly now 
make a considerable part of his corps. While they re- 
main on their present station, they will, I hope, prove 
sufficient to repel any excursions made by the enemy's 
partizan parties, and that you will in case of greater 
force endeavour on seasonable notice to succour and 
support the militia according to your kind promise, for 
which I acknowledge myself under the greatest obliga- 
tions to you. 

Should Cornwallis experience the fate of Burgoyne, of 
which his Lordship has a very fair prospect, it is probable 
that Clinton will endeavour to procure some splendor by 
the blaze of houses, and the stealing of forage, of which 
this State, from its vicinity to the enemy, is the most 
likely to feel the effects ; but should he penetrate the 
country, and discover the least disposition to make a 
settlement, we shall then hope, Sir, as far as circum- 
stances will allow, for your assistance in compelling 
him to change his quarters. 

I have the honor to be, with great esteem, Sir, 
Your most humble servant. 

Wil. Livingston. 

Major General Heath. 

WILLIAM HEATH TO MESHECH WEARE. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sept. 17 th , 1781. 
Sir, — I have received undoubted intelligence from 
Canada that the enemy have for some time been build- 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 257 

ing canoes and small batteaux at S fc Johns, bakeing hard 
bread at Montreal and forwarding it to the same place ; 
and this morning I learn that a brigade of troops have 
arrived at S* Johns from Quebeck. This renders it very 
apparant that the enemy have designs on the frontiers 
some where ; from the reported size of the small craft, 
they seem calculated for the creeks and rivers towards 
the settlements on the head of Connecticut River rather 
than to cross the lakes ; in that case the western militia 
of your State can best lend them aid. I submit to you 
the cautioning them to be in readiness for the purpose. 
I have sent a reinforcement to Albany, but the im- 
portance of the posts in the Highlands and present 
situation of the army are such as forbid my makeing any 
considerable detachments to a distance, and constrain me 
to request that the number of militia called for from 
your State in his Excellency's last letter may be sent 
on immediately. They may, if not already on their 
march this way, rendezvous at Charlestown, N. 4, and 
remain there (or in case the enemy should attack the 
settlements above march to their aid) untill further 
orders ; in such case please order the Issuing Commissary 
in your State to see that they are served with provisions 
while detained in the State. 

I have the honor to be, with great regard, 

Your Honor's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. In case the militia rendezvous at Charlestown 
please direct the commanding officer to report to me his 
name, rank, and the number of militia with him. 

W.H. 

Hon. Meshech Weare, Esquire. 



17 



258 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1781. 



MESHECH WEARE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Hampton Falls, Sep r 17, 1781. 

Sir, — On the 10 th instant I bad the honer of receiving 
your favor inclosing General Washington's letter, for the 
militia to march as speedily as may be to joyn the army 
now under your command. Agreeable to which orders 
were immediately given for 400 militia to march to be at 
Springfield by the 25 th instant, which I hope some will be 
able to accomplish ; but by reason of the distance we had 
to send orders for the men to march, and afterwards for 
the men to travil, I apprehend it will be something 
longer before they can generally get there. I am fully 
impress d with the importance of their joyning your army 
as soon as possible, and no exertion shall be wanting to 
forward them. I am likewise honord with your favor 
informing me of the arrival of the English fleet at New 
York. Every intelligence at this important crisis is 
deeply interesting, and I shall gratefully acknowledge 
the favor of such intelligence as you may from time 
to time have oppertunity to communicate. 

I am, with great esteem and respect, Sir, 

Y r ob* and hum le ser*. 

Meshech Weare. 

Hon le Maj r Gen 1 Heath. 






SAMUEL H. PARSONS TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Stamford, 17 th Sep r , 1781. 

Dear General, — By the desire of the Governor and 
Council I have come to this place to take command of 
the State troops, and coast guards in the western part of 
this State and such continental troops as you are pleas'd 
to send for the protection of this State. Of this I sup- 



1781.] SAMUEL II. PARSONS. 259 

pose the Governor has informd you, as he assure! me he 
would immediately do, that I might not fall under your 
censure for continuing out of camp. The desultory ex- 
peditions adopted by the enemy are alarming indeed to 
this State and from the local situation of it their danger 
is greater than that of any other State. A fleet consist- 
ing of forty sail of small vessels and three arrnd vessels 
pas'd this place eastward on Saturday night, and this 
morning a firing is heard eastward, but seems at a great 
distance. I immediately dispatch d expresses to the coast 
as far as Newport, advising of the sailing of the fleet that 
course : and suppose it probable the accounts arrivd last 
night at Newport, as they reach d New Haven before day 
light on Sunday morning. I have advis'd Major Tall- 
madge to remove to Greenfield, as he will there be better 
situated to aford his aid, either east or west, than at 
Canaan, and he will begin his march either this afternoon 
or in the morning. I should be happy in receiving your 
consent to my continuing on this station until your 
further orders, and that you will honor me with such 
command of the continental troops as you see fit; the 
addition you have receivd to your command from the 
militia and N. York State troops and consequent addi- 
tional numbers you have sent to the lines, will aford a 
command in the whole much larger than any division in 
camp, and the State troops, coast guards, and detachment 
under Major Tallmage much greater than my own divi- 
sion in camp, if you don't think proper to unite the 
whole under one command. 

I shall tomorrow remove eastward as far as New 
Haven. The dragoon who brings this w T ill find me with 
your letters, if you are pleas'd to write me. 

I am, with esteem and respect, y r obed fc h 1 serv*. 

Sam 1 H. Parsons. 

P. S. Major Laurence has been absent ten days to 
Poughkeepsie and camp; as I have expected his return 






260 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

for five days, I fear some misfortune has befallen him. I 
wish to hear whether he has been at camp and when he 
left it. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO SAMUEL H. PARSONS. 

Head Quaetebs, Continental Tillage, Sep* 19 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 17 th is just come to hand. 
In a letter I had the honor to receive from his Excellency 
Governor Trumbull, dated at Hartford the 7 th instant 
(and if I mistake not in your own hand writing), his 
Excellency is pleased to express himself as follows, 
" General Parsons who was returning to camp I have 
desired to remain in the State for the present." My 
reply in a letter of the 10 th was, " I wish Major General 
Parsons to join the army as soon as his presence at the 
eastward can be dispensed with." I had not an idea 
of your being detained for the purpose of repairing to 
the vicinity of the army or exercising command over 
troops immediately under my own command. At this 
particular time when the enemy in New York may 
be supposed to be peculiarly active with design, if possi- 
ble, to relieve Lord Cornwallis and when many places are 
threatned, it is both my wish and expectation that all 
officers whom I have the honor to command will be with 
their respective commands, that I may have it in my 
power to make such detachments as the good of the ser- 
vice, my country, and my superiors have a right to 
expect. Every part of the country whose protection is 
committed to my care, or supposed to be intitled to pro- 
tection from the army, may depend upon receiving aid as 
far as circumstances will permit, and for which conforma- 
ble to my instructions I hold myself accountable. 

From several circumstances I am led to conclude the 
fleet that passed up the Sound on Saturday are not 
designed against the towns in the vicinity of Stamford. 



1781] WILLIAM HEATH. 261 

I have heard nothing of Major Lawrence ; hope no 
accident has befallen him. 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, your obed fc serv\ 

W. Heath, M. General, 

Major General Parsons. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Head Quarters, Continental, Sep* 19 th , 1781. 

Sir, — In the postscript of mine of the 17 th I mentioned 
that a fleet of about 40 sail passed up the Sound on the 
15 th . I have not heard from them since, but am in 
expectation of further intelligence very soon. It was 
thought by some that it was a wood fleet only ; it may 
be so. I learn through another channel since that a 
number of transports fell down to the Hook the same 
day, said to have troops on board, — not a hint has trans- 
pired of any certainty of their destination. The enemy 
are undoubtedly embarrassed in the extreem on account 
of Lord Cornwallis's situation, and have reason to be so- 
They wish to do something to extricate themselves if 
possible, and to keep up the spirits of the troops, & c . I 
have long felt a concern for the eastern parts of your 
Commonwealth, it gives me pain when I reflect on the 
enemy haveing foot hold on Ponobscot River. I think 
they will struggle hard to have that vallueable country 
confirmed to them, and if when a peace takes place the 
conditions should be that each of the powers at war shall 
retain what they have taken, it will be a most humiliate- 
ing consideration to Massachusetts. It is altogether con- 
jecture, yet I have a jealousy in my own mind that some 
of the vessels which have lately sail'd are destined to 
Ponobscot. 

His Excellency the Commander in Chief has directed 
me to send on after him one hundred head of beef cattle 
weekly. This will require your superintend ants to be 



262 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

very punctual in forwarding the number required from 
your Commonwealth. I pray there may not be the least 
deficiency. I have no late news from the southward; 
our expectations are high and sanguine. 

Please present my respectfull compliments to your 
amiable lady. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 
Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep* 22 nd , 1781. 

Sir, — I have been honored with yours of the 12 th 
instant ; wish the favorable opinion your Excellency is 
pleased to express of the execution of the command com- 
mitted to me may equal your expectations. I pray you 
accept my hearty thanks for your kind wishes. 

The militia from your Commonwealth have come on 
with more punctuality, and are nearer complete than 
from any other State (New York excepted). All the 
Eastern States have great credit in forwarding their sup- 
plies of beef cattle. With respect to rum there is a gen- 
eral deficiency ; the troops on fatigue do not receive rum 
one tenth part of the time. The old soldiers are as usual 
remarkably healthy ; the recruits and militia have some 
sick, the number might probably be less could they at 
this season receive a proper allowance of spirit. With re- 
spect to clothing I do not know what the intentions of Con- 
gress are. I am informed that large quantities of cloaths 
were brought from France by Col Laurens for the United 
States ; whether this will be sufficient for the whole army 
or not I cannot say, or in what way it will be appropriated 
is not within the sphere of my knowledge. Perhaps Con- 
gress have communicated their intentions to the States. 



1781.] SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK. 263 

I shall be happy if the supply proves so ample as to 
ease the States of makeing provision themselves, bat in 
some way the clothing should be seasonably prepared. 

The season for puting up salted provisions, especially 
beef, is approaching. It seems to me if the cattle were 
to be driven on much farther this way than has generally 
been practiced and slaughtered, it would save a great 
expence in transportation. The salt necessary to pre- 
serve the meat will not be greater in one place than in 
another, and the expence and weight no greater seperate 
than with the meat, and at least two thirds the expence 
of the transportation of the meat will be saved, but this 
the wisdom of your Hon ble Legislature will determine. 

We have a confirmation of the enemy takeing the 
cannon from the Grand Battery in New York, and that a 
very considerable part of their force has embarked and 
fallen down, but have not yet an account of their going 
to sea. Every account confirms the loss of the enemy to 
have been great at New London, and Arnold's conduct in 
burning, & c , almost universally detested by the British 
officers. Great sickness and mortality have seized De- 
lancy's corps. No certain news from the southward. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect and 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK.* 

Dear Sir, — I waited three days in N. Y. expecting 
some agreeable news from the southward ; there were 
many arrivals in that time, but nothing of consequence 

* This letter and the one immediately following were enclosed in a letter from Major 
Tallmadge to General Heath, dated Greenfield, Sept. 23, 6 o'clock, p. m. — Eds. 



264 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

transpired. No hand bills were printed. I concluded 
that nothing pleasing had hapned. They say they can- 
not expect good news from that quarter. A whale boat 
arrived from there yesterday morning ; when she came 
away the French fleet were at their old quarters in the 
Chessipeak. Not known where the British fleet were. 

You will see an account of an action in the paper 
between the fleets, the truth in that account is sup- 
pressed. The Brittish had four ships very much shat- 
tered, and lost five officers in the engagement, their rank 
I don't know, only that one of them was a captain ; he 
had both his thighs shot off. 

It was reported that their had been an action between 
Cornwallis and the Marquis, in which the latter suffered 
much ; but as it was suffered to die away without being 
blasoned by a hand bill no credit was given to it. The 
Prudent sailed some days ago, in very bad order, to join 
Graves. The Robust, of 74 guns, tho she can scarcely 
keep above water, fell down yesterday opposite the town, 
and will attempt to join Graves as soon as they can find 
out where he is. Adm 1 Digbee is hourly expected ; they 
say with eight sail of the line. He has only three under 
his comm d . The troops that embarked about a fortnight 
past continue on board ; they lye at the watering place. 
Gen 1 Clinton's baggage is on board ; they will sail when- 
ever the Chessipeak is open, and not till then. There are 
six thousand troops on board at least. There are only 
invalids in Brookline fort ; their n° I cannot assertain. 

It has been twice reported in N. Y. that Cornwallis's 
army were Burgoined ; it died away soon, being but 
little credited. 

Arnold is generally blamed for his conduct at N. Lon- 
don. His loss has been great. The 54 th resc* lost killed 
and wounded 96 men ; the 40 th about the same number. 
10 commissioned officers were killed ; Major Montgomery 
was amongst the slain. 160 were brought in wounded, the 



1781.] SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK. 205 

most of them mortally. They rate their whole loss at near 
400, some say five hundred, a Bunker Hill expedition they say. 

The British say if Arnold has the command they will 
be able to make but few more expeditions. 

It is conjectured if matters go against them at the 
southward that a diversion may be made up the North 
River. They are taking all the cannon out of the Grand 
Battery at N. Y. and are carting them up to the provoo. 
They are likewise taking the cannon out of Fort Wash- 
ington. The 17 th reg* of horse ly at Flushing; Hulet at 
Jamaica ; the 54 th and 40 th in N. Y. and some Hessians. 
The militia in N. Y. are exercised twice and three times 
a week. No one will dare command them if an attack is 
made ; the last time they were out many balls were fired 
as they went thro the firings. 

There are warrants issued to the officers at Hunting- 
ton, to supply the reffugees at the Neck with forriage, 
and to levy a rate on the town to defray the expences. 
There are not to exceed 350 men at Loyd's Neck. About 
50 at Slongoe, and ten officers. I wish you would pay 
the latter a visit. If I had ten men I would take every 
officer they have tomorrow evening. 

The Commodore's flagg at N. Y. is on board a trans- 
port. You will excuse this scraul ; I write in a hurry, and 
have not time to revise or correct. God bless you all. 

I am your humble serv\ S. G. 

18 Sept r , 1781. 

N. B. You will find the word say in this letter on fatigue 
from beginning to the end of it; it is too late to help it. 



SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK. 

Dear Sir, — I have the pleasure to congratulate you 
on a victory gained over the British fleet by the Count 
De Grass. The B. fleet arrived at the Hook two days ago. 



2G6 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 

Several of their ships are much damaged, and many lives 
lost in the engagement. Cornwallis is given over for lost 
by the most stanch friends to goverment, and I believe 
by this time is a prisoner with his whole army. 

If the French fleet should arrive here you must look 
out sharp or they will take all the stock from the county 
of Suffolk. 

They have not began to forriage here yet, I expect 
that they will soon begin, if they should they will [torn~\ 
strong. 

It is the most sickly time amongst the army that was 
ever known ; the yellow fevor rages amasingly. I have 
nothing more to write at present. You shall have further 
particulars at the appointed time for the boats to come. 
I am your humble serv\ 

S. G. 

Sept r 22, 1781. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, 26 th Sep r , 1781. 

Sir, — I was honored with your favors of the 22 d and 
23 d instant. Your orders respecting wood for the general 
officers and staff of the garrison will be attended to. It 
had not escaped my notice that stores of various kinds 
have been ordered from this garrison unknown to me. I 
presume this practice will not be judged military or rea- 
sonable when the consequences are considered. 

The releif of Verplank's and Stony Points by detach- 
ments from the army, for the winter, will not in my opin- 
ion promote the service as well as if it was by distinct 
corps, for officers of detachments cannot be supposed to 
take the same care of men which their own would do. 
This is the result of the litle service I have seen, and ac- 
cords with the ideas you were pleased to hint to me, when 
last at the Point, of doeing duty by regiments. The 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 2G7 

preparation for taking in the chain will require some 
time, especially with our small means. 

By the time that is done it may from present appear- 
ances be drawn in. For no danger can arrise to the post 
if it were now secured. If it's delayed too long, what 
may now be easily done will then become (in our weak 
state) a very fatiguing and arduous task. If this repre- 
sentation should meet your approbation, I beg Col. Tup- 
per may be sent over to make the necessary arrangements. 
He may inform Col. Hughes what cordage is necessary. 
The artificers are arrived, and disposed of as you 
directed. 

General Patterson brought me very flattering intelli- 
gence. But I shall be satisfied if it's but partially true. 
Accept my thanks for your attention in droping me the 
news of the day. 

I am, Sir, your humble serv*. 

Alex r M c Dougall. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep t 26, 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of this date is just come to 
hand. 

I am at some loss to determine to what various stores 
you allude that have been removed from the garrison of 
West Point unknown to you, in a way unmilitary. Cer- 
tainly no such practices ought to be allowed. I have sev- 
eral times of late ordered amunition and stores from the 
grand magazines at West Point to such places as I thought 
required them ; if to these you allude, it is necessary to 
observe that a distinction is to be made between stores 
assigned for the use of particular posts and those lodged 
in the grand magazines for the use of the whole army and 
all other posts in the department. In the former case it 



268 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 

would be both unmilitary and verry improper to remove 
ammunition or provisions designed for the particular use 
of the garrison without consulting the commandant to 
know whether they can be spared without injury to or 
endangering the safety of the garrison and post ; but this 
by no means applys to the grand magazines. The prin- 
cipal of each department present ; of the artillery, quarter 
master general, adjutant general, commissary general of 
provisions and of military stores ; director of the hospital, 
clothier general, forage master, &c, are under the imme- 
diate orders of the commander in chief present, only as 
are all the great magazines or reserves under their charge ; 
and the commander in chief directs the augmentation, 
removal, or distribution of them to such places and posts 
as he may judge the service requires, he being equally 
accountable for the whole, as the officer is for the par- 
ticular post assigned him, and as the commander in chief 
has weekly returns from every department, and every 
post under his command (or ought to have), he is the 
only judge what distributions are necessary, the com- 
mandant of a post or garrison, brigade or division in the 
field has the same power and controul over the assistants 
of the several departments which are assigned to his com- 
mand, and the stores under their charge, conformable to the 
standing regulations, but cannot interfere with the grand 
magazines. West Point has long been our principal reposi- 
tory of ammunition and provisions. I have some time since 
directed the officers of the several departments to make 
it more so by depositing every thing there not wanted for 
immediate use, and to draw from thence as occasion may 
require, that is, from the magazines, not the issuing store, 
observing in all distributions of provisions, liquors, & c , an 
equal proportion to the garrison as to other troops in the 
field and at other posts and no more, which shows that I 
consider all grand magazines in the several departments 
subject to my own orders only, while honored with the 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 2G9 

chief command of the department. These, my dear Sir, 
are precisely the ideas that I have imbibed of military 
propriety and military command. I will thank you for 
pointing out to me wherein you think I am mistaken. 

I think it is yet much too soon to take up the chain. It 
was not taken up the last year, if I do not mistake, untill 
some time in November. Many were then of opinion it 
was then too soon. I thought it was not, but think it so 
now. When it is done Col Tupper shall be desired to 
assist, and any other aid that may be necessary from the 
army shall be sent you. 

I am much in favor of doing duty by corps rather than 
by detachments ; but in the case of the garrisons of Ver- 
plank's and Stony Points the present state of the com- 
panies forbid it, so many detachments have been made 
that it would require two or three of our present com- 
panies to form a garrison. If the officers of all those 
companies were to be placed in the garrison, it would be 
beside the plan adopted for those garrisons. If a part of 
the officers were seperated entirely from their own com- 
panies the evil at present complained of would not be 
removed. If any thing a greater inconvenience would 
take place. These I fully considered before I gave the 
order, and necessity compelled to the measure. 

I am, with very great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Maj r General McDougall. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO SILVANUS SEELY. 
Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep 1 26 th , 1781. 

My dear Sir, — Your favor of the 19 th did not reach 
me until this moment. I thank you most heartily for the 
intelligence communicated therein, and request you to 



270 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781.. 

favor me from time to time with such as comes to your 
knowledge; your situation gives you the best advantage 
for the purpose, which occasioned my writing to you yester- 
day which you will probably receive before this reaches 
you. I doubt not the present disposition of your regiment 
is the best calculated for checking the incursions of any 
partizan parties of the enemy, preventing illiciting trade, 
afford protection to the inhabitants and gain intelligence. 
If his Excellency Governor Livingston should at any 
time wish to have any alteration made in your disposi- 
tion, please, upon his signifying it, to act conformably. 
Should the enemy make any movements please give me 
instant notice of it, that if necessary aid may be sent to 
you from the army. If you find it necessary to send a 
person into New York or on to Staten Island at any time 
to obtain intelligence in whom you can confide, you have 
my full permission ; let it be done with proper precau- 
tion, and pointedly prevent its being made a channel of 
the least traffick. 

Please let me hear from you when ever any thing 
transpires worthy of notice, either on the land or water. 

I am, with very great regard, my dear Sir, 
Your obedient servant. 

W. Heath, M. Gen. 

P. S. The frequent interceptions of the public mails in 
time past have induced Congress to order an escorte to be 
furnished to the mail between Morristown and Fishkill, 
which I have done by appointing four trusty dragoons to 
that duty, but the enemies' emmissaries may be increased ; 
if they should I wish you to hunt them out if possible, 
and to send a light patrole about the time the post passes 
to such places as are near you and most likely to be a 
lurking place for the enemy. I intend the sending a 
patrole from the army as far as Suffran's. 

W. H. 

Colo. Seely. 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 271 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Sockatock Bridge, Sept r 26 th , 17S1. 

Dear Gen l , — Very recent intelligence from Long 
Island induced me yesterday to make preparations for 
an attack on Fort Slongo. Accordingly the boats were 
collected and the troops prepared for the expedition, but 
were prevented crossing by the failure of a few boats 
and a high wind. I shall by all means improve the en- 
suing night for the same purpose, and in the mean time 
shall move the troops to Green's Farms this morning, 
about 3 miles east of this, to prevent suspicion. 

Inclosed you will receive a N. York paper of the 22 d . 
My latest accounts from that q r were on the 23 d . The 
fleet were then at the Hook, taking every measure to 
refit, being very much damaged. My informant supposes 
they have lost three sail of the line, and have been beat 
off from the southern q r . Cornwallis is given over for 
lost, and Sir Harry appears to be much in the horrors 
that he cannot relieve him. The troops on board ship 
still remain within the Hook, undoubtedly bound south- 
ward if circumstances will by any means warrant the 
measure. What can the enemy mean by removing the 
cannon from the Battery and Fort Washington ? Surely 
they can't think of leaving New York. May they not be 
inte[n]ded to put on board some heavy transports to sta- 
tion as guard ships? I hope to know more particularly 
in a few days. 

The 3 d battalion of Delancey's brigade have rec d orders 
to escort the foragers down into Suffolk county. The 
van of the waggons a few days ago arrived at Flushing, 
where they are halted for the present. The moment 
they move I shall know their numbers, route, &c. The 
garrison at Brooklyn fort is almost wholly taken out, as 
well as that of Fort Washington and some works near 



272 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

Haerlem. I have sent an agent to make the necessary 
enquiry on the heads you mention. 

A fleet of 12 square rigged vessels and about as many 
of smaller size yesterday were off Norwalk, most probably 
a wood or forage fleet. If it can by any means be con- 
sistent with your pleasure to continue this detachment 
in this q r for a little time, I am determined if the 3 d bat- 
talion comes into Suffolk county to strike them if pos- 
sible capitally. They have 300 waggons prepared for 
this service. Since we have been in this q r , there has 
not a single boat landed from the other side, between 
Norwalk and Stratford, on the plundering business, which 
heretofore was very frequently practiced. 

If the Gen 1 should find it necessary to recall the dra- 
goons which are with me, I should be glad to be indulged 
w T ith a few, as they will be particularly serviceable in all 
expeditions across the Sound. Against works I always 
improve a few with their broad swords, and if the for- 
agers come down they will be peculiarly serviceable. 

I am, dear General, with every sentiment of esteem, 
Your most obed* serv*. 

Benj a Tallmadge. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO WILLIAM LIVINGSTON. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep 1 28 th , 1781. 

Sir, — Having received information from Col Seely 
that the enemy have disembarked a large body of troops 
at Staten Island, are impressing waggons, and makeing 
preparations which indicate an incursion into the Jersies 
for the purpose of forageing or with other designs, I have 
ordered a detachment of regular troops, with a field piece 
to cross King's Ferry and advance as far as Ramapaugh 
where they will halt and remain untill further orders, 



1781.] JOSIAH BARTLETT. 273 

unless the enemy should cross over from the island, in 
which case the troops will advance rapidly to the aid of 
the militia; should the enemy make an incursion in 
force a further reinforcement with a general officer will 
be detached. In the mean time please direct Colonel 
Seely to make such movements and take such positions 
as may be thought most eligible. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, 

Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gov r Livingston. 



JOSIAH BARTLETT* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

S hImpshirL EW } lN C °™ TTEE of Safety, Exeter, 

Sept/ 29 th 1781. 

Sir, — Your letter of the 17 th instant directed to the 
President of this State was received the 25 th instant. 
The President being absent, the Committee have taken 
the same under consideration. 

The accounts we have lately received from the western 
parts of this State serve to confirm us in the sentiments 
held forth in your letter, that the enemy will probably 
attempt to make inroads on the settlements at Con- 
necticut River. Some part of our militia had marched 
previous to the receipt of your letter and had orders to 



* Josiah Bartlett was born in Amesbury, Mass., Nov. 21, 1729, and studied medicine. 
On completing his medical education he removed to Kingston, N. H., which continued to 
be his home until his death, May 19, 1795. He early took an interest in public affairs, and 
was elected a member of the legislature in 1765, serving down to the Revolution In 1775 
he was chosen to the Continental Congress, where he was a zealous advocate for indepen- 
dence, and one of the signers of the Declaration. In 1779 he was made Chief Justice of the 
Court of Common Pleas of New Hampshire: in 1782 a Justice of the Superior Court; and 
in 1790 Chief Justice. He was for three years President of the State, and afterward the 
first Governor chosen under the State Constitution He was also one of the founders of 
the New Hampshire Medical Society, of which he was the first President. See Appleton's 
Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. i. p. 185 ; New Hampshire State Papers, vol. xxii. 
pp. 824-829.— Eds. 

18 



274 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

rendezvous at Springfield ; but the great difficulties sub- 
sisting in the western part of this State on account of 
the dispute of Vermont, in addition to the probability 
of the enemy's movements that way, induced the Com- 
mittee to order that those men who had set out for 
Springfield should be immediately marched to Charles- 
town, and that those who had not marched should be sent 
thither by the nearest rout. We are doubtful whether 
the continental stores there are sufficient for^ the men, 
and have given orders for the supplying them from the 
provisions which we were to raise by order of Congress 
the present year. We have given orders to the com- 
mandant of the regiment to report to you his name, 
rank, and the number of militia with him agreeably to 
your letter. The greater part of the towns in two coun- 
ties of this State east of Connecticut River deny the 
jurisdiction of the State and have joined the State of 
Vermont (so called) and notwithstanding the late resolu- 
tions of Congress still persist in joining Vermont. The 
difficulties are so many and great in those parts that the 
Committee are of opinion it is absolutely necessary the 
men should remain in that quarter. If they should be 
ordered to the southward the march will be long and the 
term of their enlistment being short will expire before 
they can do much service. If you should be of opinion 
that they may remain there and no continental officer 
should be in that quarter to give them orders, Bridier 
Gen 1 Bellows (of this State's militia, who lives in Walpole) 
will be near, and will give the necessary orders in case of 
alarms, &c. 

I am, with due respect, your most obedient serv\ 

Josiah Bartlett, Chairm n . 

Major General William Heath. 






1781.] WILLIAM IIEATH. 275 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Sep 1 30 th , 1781. 
9 o'clock, A. M. 

Dear General, — I have this moment received a New 
York paper of the 26 th instant which announces the 
arrival of Admiral Digby. M r Rivington does not men- 
tion the number of ships which have arrived, but through 
the same channel that I obtained the paper I learn 
he arrived with three sail of the line and no others ; 
that they have sent to Hallifax for two sail more of the 
line. I have requested the President of Congress to 
forward the news paper with this letter to your Excel- 
lency. The troops that were embarked at New York 
disembarked, as I mentioned in a former letter, at Staten 
Island, where they have been impressing waggons, & c . 
I have sent a detachment to Ramapaugh, where they not 
only cover that pass into the mountains, but are at hand 
to aid the Jersey militia if necessary. The Command r of 
S fc Johns lately sent a party to gain intelligence from 
Saratoga, a Cap* Dunham and two militia men fell in 
with five of the party whom they conducted safe to 
Saratoga with an address that did them much honor. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* ser*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 1 st , 1781. 

Sir, — I was honored with yours of the 24 th ult° the* 
night before last. I much regret your being again at- 
tacked with the excruciating pain of the gout ; hope ere 
this time you are abroad again. 



276 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1781, 

Admiral Digby arrived at New York the 25 th ult° with 
three sail of the line and one frigate and no more. Prince 
William Henry, third son to the King of England, came 
in the fleet. They have sent to Hallifax for two sail more 
of the line. The whole naval force of the enemy now fit 
for service at New York is twenty sail of the line, besides 
frigates ; that of the Count de Grass thirty seven sail of the 
line. A very great superiority is yet on the side of our 
allies notwithstanding the arrival of Admiral Digby, which 
for some time has been the only hope of the enemy. The 
principal force of the enemy is now on Staten Island, where 
it is conjectured they are planing some expedition for the 
relief of Lord Cornwallis. Commodore Johnston, instead 
of going to the Cape of Good Hope as was expected, the 
enemy say has gone to the River Plata on the coast of 
Brazil and has taken possession of Buenos Ayres. A most 
mortal sickness rages among the enemy and inhabitants 
in the vicinity of New York. It is said five or six have 
died out of a family. 

With every sentiment of respect & esteem, I have the 
honor to be, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

The command 1 of St. Johns lately sent a party towards 
Saratoga to seize a person or two for the purpose of ob- 
taining intelligence with very particular injunctions to 
exhibit an address of vigilance and fortitude. On the 
25 tn a Cap* Dunham of the militia and two men only took 
five of the party, and conducted them safe to the camp 
at Saratoga, in a manner that does Cap* Dunham and the 
two men much honor. W. H. 

Please give the enclosed addressed to Col Francis of 
Philadelphia, who is executing a commission for the 
Hon ble M r Morris. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 277 



WILLIAM HEATH TO BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 

Private. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 5 th , 1781. 

My dear Sir, — I pray you accept my warmest thanks 
for your unremiting endeavours to render service to your 
country. The judgment and secresy with which you 
planned the enterprise against Fort Slongo do you honor. 
Enterprises of this kind, especially at this time, will be 
productive of the best consequences to the public service. 
I wish you therefore to keep your fruitfull genius em- 
ployed in exploring and planing the enemy's weak sides, 
and strike them where it can be done without too much 
risk. Many of the enemy's posts are at this time weak. 
What think you of the works on the north end of York 
Island ; this would be an enterprise of first magnitude in 
the eyes of the world. Can it be effected, with what 
force think you ? Endeavour to ascertain their strength 
out side and in, their guards and garrisons. You some 
time since requested a few dragoons, you shall have 
them, let the number be as few as will answer your 
purposes. I have written to Col Sheldon to assign 
them to you. Inform him how many you wish to have. 

I am, with very great regard, my dear Sir, 

Yours sincerely. 

W. Heath, M. Genl. 

Major Tallmadge. 

'WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct. 5 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours 
of the 23 rd and 24 th ult°, and beg leave to congratulate 
your Excellency on the prospect of success, (which with 
the blessing of Heaven) seems almost assured to you, 
and promises America the most interesting and happy 
advantages. 



278 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

I have the coppy of instructions from the Gen 1 Assem- 
bly of the State of Georgia, the resolution of Congress, 
and your Excellency's instructions respecting Major Gen- 
eral Howe's conduct while in command in the State of 
Georgia, but not a single evidence do I know of, or who 
is to support the charges. I therefore request to be in- 
formed, whether it be your Excellency's pleasure that I 
immediately appoint a court of enquiry, whether there 
are any papers lodged with your Excellency which will 
tend further to illucidate the matter, and on whom I am 
to call to support the charges. 

I have the pleasure to congratulate your Excellency 
on the success of the American arms in this quarter in 
the reduction of Fort Slongo on Long Island on the 
morning of the 3 rd instant. The enterprise w r as planed 
by Major Tallmadge, and executed by Major Trescott 
with an address and gallantry that does them much 
honor, and what heightens the pleasure is the success 
was obtained without the loss of a man on our side and 
but one wounded. It is said a number of small arms 
were taken. Major Yanalstin, the commandant, was 
gone to New York to solicit a 12 p dr for the fort. 

In a former letter I requested a coppy of your order 
respecting Cap* Livermore of the New Hampshire Line, it 
has been reported that he is restored to his command, but 
I have received nothing respecting it that will warrant 
my publishing it in orders and Cap 1 Livermore is held in 
a disagreable suspence. 

I am carefully forwarding on for the use of the army 
under your Excellency's immediate command one hun- 
dred head of beef cattle weekly, and shall continue to 
do so untill ordered otherwise. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 






1781.] WILLIAM LIVINGSTON. 279 



WILLIAM LIVINGSTON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Trenton, 11 October, 1781. 

Sir, — I should much sooner have done myself the 
honour of acknowledging the receipt of your favour of 
the 28 th ultimo, but the multiplicity of business at the 
sitting of our Assembly, and other unavoidable avoca- 
tions, will, I hope, apologize for the delay. 

I have, Sir, to express my grateful sense of your 
attention to this State in ordering a detachment of the 
troops under your command with a field piece to advance 
as far as Ramapaugh, which I think is the best post they 
can take, until the enemy render it necessary for them 
to move farther down. But I am apt to think that the 
poor devils on Staten Island are so perplexed with the 
present posture of affairs, that they know not themselves 
what they would be about ; and from the pains lately 
taken in Britain to trumpet the martial fame of Corn- 
wallis, and Clinton's jealousy of having his own reputa- 
tion eclipsed by the rising glory of that rival, I verily 
believe the latter would not regret his Lordship's falling 
a victim to his present beseigers. At all events I could 
never persuade myself that he would be so mad as to 
risque a march of his army through this State to Phila- 
delphia, because tho' he might by a rapid push gain that 
city before we could collect in sufficient force to check 
him, I should think it impossible for him to effect his 
return against the numbers that would by that time be 
assembled to dispute his progress ; and to attempt it by 
water would be just making a present of his troops to the 
fleet of our ally. 

The construction therefore which I put on their 
manoeuvres on the island, is that they think it most 
expedient to be prepared on the shortest notice after 



2 80 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

hearing the fate of Cornwallis to take their measures 
accordingly ; and the frequent change of their local 
situation is easily accounted for from their having the 
yellow fever. It is however very probable both from 
their present necessitous circumstances as to forage, and 
their reasonable apprehensions of a seige after we have 
done his Lordship's business, that they may make an 
incursion into this State, in which case I doubt not, they 
will according to custom shew fleeter heels in their 
retreat than their advance. 

Coll Seely, I believe, is as properly posted as possible ; 
and by his patrols and out-posts makes his corps as useful 
for the defence of the State as the number of his men 
will admit of. 

I am, with great esteem, Sir, your most humble serv. 

Wil : Livingston. 

The Hon bIe Major General Heath. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 11 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — All accounts from New York agree 
that the enemy are at work day and night in refitting 
their men of war, and preparing fire ships, ten or 
twelve of which, it is said, will be compleated by the 14 th . 
I hope the account which I sent of this the 7 th , which 
was the first knowledge I obtained of it, reached your 
Excellency. The fire ships are taken from the trans- 
ports and Goodrichs's fleet ; they are filled with combust- 
ables, & c , below deck, have guns mounted on their decks, 
and new painted and to appearance are the most beauti- 
ful ships in the fleet. It is said 3,000 regular troops are 
to embarke on board the fleet as marines, that the fleet 
when ready will consist of 23 sail of the line and 14 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 281 

frigates ; with these and the fire ships, without any 
transports, they intend to make a furious attack on the 
French fleet. 

By accounts from General Stark as late as the 8 th 
instant every thing indicates an attack on the northern 
frontiers. It is said the enemy's force will consist of two 
British reg fc , one of Yagers, and the collected body of 
Tories, & c , under the command of General Riedesel. I 
have ordered the 2 nd New Hampshire reg* to that quarter. 
Colonel Wiessenfels, a very good reg* of New York 
levies, I sent up some time since, with the New Hamp- 
shire reg fc of militia. These with the other force with 
General Stark, and the militia of Vermont who have 
rfromised their aid if necessary, and the other neighbour- 
ing militia will I trust be a force sufficient to repulse any 
that may be brought against them. 

We are impatiently waiting the signal of intelligence 
to shout your victory over Lord Cornwallis. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. I am exceedingly sorry to find by Gen 1 Stark's 
letter, that he has tried at a court martial and executed 
Loveless, who came with very particular written instruc- 
tions to sieze a prisoner from the neighborhood of 
Saratoga, in which attempt he and his party were taken, 
which has been some time since mentioned. His having 
written instructions, the tenor of them, and the party 
being armed, I think clearly barred the idea of his being 
a spy, and upon what principle he was executed, I am 
at loss to determine ; am apprehensive it will make us 
some difficulty. It may be best to say as little about it 
as possible at present. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



282 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 






THOMAS McKEAN TO WILLIAM HEATH. 
(Private.) 

Sir, — The intelligence you have from time to time 
communicated to Congress has been very satisfactory, 
and always corroborated what I had derived thro' other 
channels. 

I am now to inform vou of some facts of the utmost 
importance : however you may be at a loss to account 
for numbers or circumstances, believe me, they are 
founded on the best evidence, and perfectly true in all 
respects. 

Sir Henry Clinton is ready to sail in person with up- 
wards of five thousand chosen troops, rank and file, on 
board the British fleet, now consisting of twenty nine line 
of battle ships, besides frigates and ten fire-ships. The 
general and flag officers held a council of war on the 24 th 
September last at New-York, and determined at all haz- 
ards to proceed to the Chesapeak and endeavor to relieve 
Lord Cornwallis, and, tho' then they had but 26 ships of 
the line, to fight the French fleet and land their troops; 
they expected to be ready to sail on the fifth instant, but 
had not sailed (I believe) on Thursday the 11 th . 

As soon as you have heard of the fleet's sailing you 
may depend upon it there are near six thousand of the 
best troops on board, and in consequence there cannot 
be above four thousand of all sorts remaining in New- 
York and its environs. These must be scattered on 
Long-Island, Staaten Island, near Kings-bridge, and 
Paul us Hook. 

In this situation of affairs w r ould it not be adviseable 
to think seriously of an attack on New-York ? You may 
obtain ^\s^, thousand militia in a few days to co-operate 
with you. I rest assured you will be in readiness to 






1781]. WILLIAM HEATH. Zb6 

execute any orders you may receive from the Com- 
mander in Chief on this head. General Washington and 
Count de Grasse will in a very few days be informed of 
all these particulars, as I have dispatched expresses to 
each by the nearest routs. 

I have the honor to be, with very great regard, Sir, 
Your most obedt hbble. servt. 

Tho. M:Kean. 
Philadelphia, October 15 th , 1781. 

The Honorable Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THOMAS McKEAN. 
Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct' 16 th , 1781. 

Sib, — I have just received intelligence from New 
York of the 13 th inst., which I think may be depended 
on, as follows. As to the fleet now fit for service in New 
York you may depend on their being 23 sail of the 
line and the Prince William and Torbay from Jamaica, 
the one a 64, the other a 74, three or four fire ships 
prepared and no prospect of any more being fitted very 
soon. 35 sail of the Cork fleet have arrived, convoyed 
by a frigate of 32 guns. A fleet of transports from Eng- 
land, 11 weeks out, are hourly expected at the Hook. 
Eleven or twelve sail of the line fell down to Staten 
Island yesterday when the troops began immediately to 
embark on board from the island. It is expected that 
Gen 1 Clinton and three or four thousand men will go 
with the fleet, but the matter is yet doubtfull whether 
they sail or not. It depends wholly on their intelligence 
from the southward. A packet has arrived frorn^ Eng- 
land ; nothing transpires. On the 11 th ins* dispatches 
arrived from Earl Cornwallis, in a passage of three days. 
It was said brought an account that General Washington 



284 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

was bombarding him night and day. It is said Corn- 
wallis has no bread, and not more meat than to last him 
this month ; since he has been blockaded has received 
fresh provisions but once. 

The person who forwarded me the foregoing intelli- 
gence adds, " I have another account in addition to what 
I have enclosed which assures me that every ship which 
was able to swim have gone down to the Hook. Sir 
Henry will undoubtedly endeavour some desperate aid 
for his Lordship." 

My last accounts from the northward were of the 12 th 
ins*. The enemy were then said to be advanced on this 
side Lake George, but their force not fully known. I 
have sent a further reinforcment of regular troops to 
support Gen 1 Stark, and hope soon to hear a good account 
of them. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

Hon. Thomas M. Kean, Esquire, President. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THOMAS McKEAN. 

[Private.] 
Head Quarters, Continental Village, October 17, 1781. 
Sir, — The last evening I had the honor of receiving 
yours of the 15 th . 

I have for some time been endeavouring to possess 
myself minutely of the state of the enemy's works and 
troops, determined to strike them in any part where I 
could do it with a tolerable prospect of success and without 
too much risk. How far anything capital can be effected 
I am at a loss to determine. Although their garrisons 
are become weak, yet their works are generally good. 
They must be taken either by assault or regular ap- 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATn. 285 

proaches. The former probably cannot be effected, ex- 
cept in one or two instances ; as soon as the alarm is 
given their troops will repair to the works, not being in 
force to act in the field. After this, to attempt the works 
by storm I apprehend is scarcly supposeable, at any rate 
must be attended with great loss. To reduce them by 
regular approaches is a work of time. The principal dif- 
ficulty is that of being obliged to cross the w r ater, where 
a single small, armed vessel can destroy the boats and cut 
off the communication, unless we have shipping to pre- 
vent it. There would be a remidy if we could open a 
communication by Kingsbridge and Fort Washington ; 
but these are the best fortified of any parts of the 
island. 

My operating force at this instant is divided. One 
brigade of regular troops is gone to the northward on 
the late alarm in that quarter. A detachment of picked 
cavalry and infantry are gone to escort the money on its 
way from Boston. The best old soldiers and flower of 
this army have been picked out for the light infantry and 
other select corps which are gone to the southward. How- 
ever, I am making every preparation to strike any blow 
that may appear eligible, or to endeavour the execution 
of any orders I may receive. The regular troops gone to 
the northward, except one regiment, have orders to return 
the moment the enemy are repulsed or retire. At pres- 
ent we are threatned with the want of bread. Yesterday 
the troops received but f of a pound of flour. This 
day they cannot receive more. To-morrow unless some 
should arrive must go without. I have been importuning 
relief from every quarter where I expected it. A supply 
is not obtained. 

My latest intelligence from New York was the 14 th . The 
last of the shipping fell down to the watering place that 
morning, and it was expected they would sail in a few 
days. It is said their force is twenty-four sail of the line, 



286 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

two fifties, and a number of frigates. Probably your Ex- 
cellency may have better intelligence. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

P. S., 18 th . The last evening I received a letter from 
General Schuyler of the 15 th . He informs me that the 
enemy had not been on this side of Fort George, as was 
reported to General Stark, that they continue on Lake 
Champaign, and that since the militia have turned out 
with so much spirit, and have a regular force at hand, the 
enemy probably will not venture a penetration. Enclosed 
is coppy of a letter intercepted from Fort George going 
to the enemy. 

His Excellency Thomas M. Kkan, Esquire, President of Congress. 



I 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN TRUMBULL. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 22 nd , 1781. 

Sir, — I was this evening honored with yours of the 
18 th . I pray your Excellency will be pleased to accept 
my thanks for the early and effectual measures you were 
pleased to adopt for holding a part of your militia in 
readiness to march this way in case any movements of Sir 
Henry Clinton should make it necessary. The spirit with 
which the militia turned out at the northward and the 
early arrival of a brigade of regular troops sent from this 
army to that quarter have, I believe, effectually discour- 
aged the enemy from coming forward. By the last ac- 
counts they had not advanced further. My request of 
the 17 th for a certain number of your militia was for a 
secret purpose. It is uncertain whether they will be 
wanted. If they should, some of those nearest this way 
mentiond in your letter may answer the purpose. 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE 287 

On the evening of the 19 th the British fleet sailed from 
Sandy Hook ; 25 sail of the line, three ships of 50, three 
of 40 guns, and several frigates, with General Clinton and, 
it is said, 6,000 troops on board. There are no transports 
gone with the fleet, but a number of fireships. Every 
ship is provided with a number of carcasses fixed with 
barbed irons. They are to be fired from their cannon, if 
possible to sit fire to the rigging of the French ships. 
Their designs being early penetrated, General Washington 
and the Count de Grass have had notice sent them, and I 
believe will receive it in season. Your Excellency will 
probably have heard that Colonel Scammel, formerly 
Adj* Gen 1 of our army was wounded and taken prisoner 
near York Town about the 30 th ult°. He is since dead of 
his wounds. 

I enclose your Excellency a Philadelphia paper contain- 
ing General Greene's official letter to Congress. It was a 
well fought and glorious battle. 

I have this moment received a letter from his Excel- 
lency General Washington, dated the 6 th instant. His Ex- 
cellency observes the trenches were to be opened that 
night, that nothing very material had occurred, that the 
enemy kept up but a very saving fire. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Trumbull. 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE TO WILLIAM HEATH.* 

Norwalk, Oct r 22, 1781. 

My d b Gen l , — I have this moment received letters 
from S. G., &c, which I shall transcribe for your perusal, 

* General Heath appears to have kept only a copy of this letter, and to have sent 
the original to the President of Congress. — Eds. 



288 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

it being too hazardous to trust the originals by the dra- 
goon in the route which he must take. 

Oct' 20 th , 81. 

" D R Sir, — I have received your instructions, and have 
to inform you that the British fleet consisting of 25 sail of 
the line, 1 fifty, 2 forties, & 12 frigates, accompany' d by 
four fire ships and some empty transports left the Hook 
yesterday for the relief of Lord Cornwallis. Admiral 
Graves commands the fleet, and Gen 1 Clinton with 4,000 
chosen troops are on board." 

" With respect to the position of the enemy at the 
north end of York Island, I have been particular in my 
enquiries, but no persons are permitted to go up to 
Kingsbridge from this place without official permission. 
From Fort Washington to M c Gowen's Pass lie 2,000 men 
of different corps, but principally Hessians. They are so 
stationd that on fifteen or 20 minutes notice they can 
throw 1,500 of them into the Fort. Perhaps they are 
a little apprehensive of a movement from your quarter, 
but let me assure you they are too strong to force, and 
too alert for surprise. They furnish a strong pickett 
guard at the bridge which is relieved from the fort every 
day. The small redoubts from Harlem northward are 
all f urnish'd from the fort, arid the troops lie in such a po- 
sition that they are handy to relieve or reinforce either, — 
in fine, they appear to be judiciously posted." 

" The 17 th regiment of dragoons lie at Westbury. Ar- 
nold's whole corps, consisting of about 300 men, mounted 
and dismounted, lie at a place called Success. Major 
Murray's corps lie at Newtown. He has three full com- 
panies, and a fourth recruiting. They are all in great 
apprehension, but suppose that their distance from the 
landing is their security. A guard of boats from Hell- 
gate thro the narrows are constantly on duty every 
night. No troops at present lie at Flushing. The light 
horse sometimes go there for the sake of pasture, but 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 289 

their situation is never known till they arrive. I have 
before this given you an account of the troops and regi- 
ments stationed in this city and on Long Island. The 
same remain here still. Since you took Fort Slongo the 
enemy have been very busy in repairing Fort Franklin 
on Loyd's Neck. They are very apprehensive of visits 
from the continental troops stationd at the Sound." 

" We have accounts of Lord Cornwallis which make it 
almost certain that he cannot hold out much longer, un- 
less this fleet should speedily relieve him. Many of his 
best friends think him a prisoner this moment." 

" There are at Loyd's Neck about 500 men, women and 
children in the refugee line; about 60 of them lodge in 
the fort every night, & not more." 

" I dare not write you again very soon, a very sharp 
look out being kept at this time on all persons passing 
from the city, by reason of a man being taken up as a 
spy on Staten Island Wednesday last, on w r hom was found 
a number of letters, drafts, &c, &c, for General Wash- 
ington. The person is a Yorker, but I have forgot his 
name, tho I heard it. For God's sake don't suffer any- 
thing to expose any of us here. You well know what 
w r ould be our fate." 

Thus much for intelligence from N. Y., which I hope 
may prove satisfactory. 

I have enclosed a letter from Cap n C. Brewster, occa- 
sioned by the prospect of striking a party of refugees on 
Long Island with but little danger. I would just observe 
to you that Satuckett, where the party are, is about 30 
miles east of Loyd's Neck, and lies upon the Sound. 
Could I by any means have dispensed w T ith your orders 
for returning to camp for a day or two, I should most cer- 
tainly have made the attempt this very night, — will 
move very speedily. 

My men are many of them so barefooted that we are 
obliged to move slow or leave them straggling miles in 

19 



290 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 

our rear, which is very unmilitary. I shall be constantly 
moveing on till I reach Col Sheldon. 

I am, my dear General, with esteem & regard, 
Your most obed c serv*. 

Benj n Talmadge. 

I have enclosed the last newspapers I have received 
from N. Y. 

Gen. Heath. 

[Coppy.] 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 24 th , 1781. 
5 o'clock, p. m. 

Sir, — I have this moment received a letter from Head 
Quarters in Virginia dated the 12 th ins*, from which I give 
you the following particulars, viz* ; that on the 6 th ins*, 
the trenches were opened and the approaches carried 
within 600 yards of the enemy's works without being 
discovered untill day light, and without loss. The 7 th and 
8 th were employed in erecting batteries ; on the 9 th two 
batteries, one on the right and another on the left were 
opened ; the next morning 4 others being compleated 
the whole opened a heavy fire of cannon and mortars 
which soon became so warm as to drive the enemy from 
their guns; their fire was almost totally silenced, and 
very little return made afterwards. 

The Charron, of 44 guns, with one transport took fire 
from our shot or shells the evening of the 10 th and were 
both consumed ; the 11 th another ship was destroyed in 
the same manner. 

On the night of the 11 th the second parrelel was ad- 
vanced within less than 400 yards of the enemy's lines. 
This approach was also effected without annoyance, and, 



1781.] LORD STIRLING. 291 

the morning of the 12 th , our fatiguemen are securely 
covered while they are compleating their works. The 
foregoing is from the best authority. 

This moment we have a report that Lord Cornwallis 
surrendered with his whole army on the 17 th ; this is said 
to have come to the Governor of Maryland from the 
Count de Grass whom the report saies had taken all his 
troops on board, and had gone to sea to meet Admiral 
Digby, who [sailed *] with twenty five sail of the line, two 
or three 50 and two or three of 40 guns. Twelve frigates 
and several fireships, with Sir Henry Clinton with four 
or five thousand picked troops, left Sandy Hook the 
afternoon of the 19 th . We impatiently wait a confir- 
mation of this momentous news, and also to hear of a 
decisive naval engagement. 

I have the honor to be. with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Governor Hancock. 



LORD STIRLING f TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Albany, October 27 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I wrote you the 24 th that Coll. Tupper had 
march'd with the New Hampshire brigade to join General 
Stark at Saratoga. Before he reach'd that place I found 
it expedient to give him a variety of orders, which were 
founded upon the different events which took place, or 
rather upon the different kinds of intelligence which I 
receiv'd. 

The 25 th at 1 o'clock, p. m., accounts came to General 
Gansevoort that the enemy were advancing in considir- 
able force within eight miles of Schenectady, burning 

* This word is erased in the rough draft kept by General Heath, who omitted to insert 
anything in place of it. The meaning of the sentence is pretty clear. — Eds. 

t For a full account of Lord Stirling, see his Life by his Grandson, William A. Duer, 
published by the New Jersey Historical Society, in 1847. — Eds. 



292 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

and destroying all before them. That part of General 
Gansevoort's brigade which is on the east side of the 
river had orders from him the day before to march 
immediately to Albany, but as they had not arriv'd I 
found there was no other means of reinforcing Schenec- 
tady with that degree of rapidity the case seem'd to 
require, but by ordering Coll. Tapper (then on his march 
to Saratoga) to that place. I dispatch'd one of my aides 
with orders to him accordingly. At the same time I 
requested General Gansevoort to turn out the militia of 
this city, which he accordingly did, and sent off about 
fifty mounted on horseback. I likewise sent an express 
to General Ranselaer, desiring him to call out his brigade 
and march to this place. About 8 clock in the evening 
I receivd intelligence from Schenectady, that the enemy 
after burning Warren's Bush (a settlement 12 miles from 
that place) had retir'd by the way of Schorarie, which 
intelligence came so direct, and conceiving it useless for 
Coll. T upper to persue his march at such a distance in 
the enemies' rear, I thought best to send him orders by 
express to turn to the right and march toward Saratoga. 
(I should have observ'd Coll. Tupper had reach'd Saratoga 
before my aide overtook him.) General Stark apprehen- 
sive of an attack from the northward, and confident the 
party near Schenectady could be but small, counter- 
manded my first orders and directed Coll. Tupper to 
remain with him. His expected attack from the north- 
ward is founded upon the following intelligence which he 
receiv'd from General Enos commanding the Vermonteers 
at or near Castle Town, — " By a scout from the north- 
ward of Dead Creek near Tie, I am inform'd that several 
tents were standing at Old Tie. He also heard the beat- 
ing of the long roll to the south of the mount (suppos'd to 
be at the old Scotchman's) but in the situation he was in it 
might be heard from the mills, and since we make no 
farther discoveries, it is my opinion the enemy have pro- 






1781.] LORD STIRLING. 293 

ceeded down Lake George." This, he observes, is all 
the intelligence he has rec d since their being at Ticon- 
deroga. Yesterday morning General Gansevoort receiv'd 
accounts that the enemy had attack'd Coll. Willet, had 
gain'd the ground of him, and had taken his field piece 
and oblidg'd him to retire to a small fort at Johnstown, 
with very little provision. In this situation I could not 
think it probable he would be reliev'd by the militia so 
soon as might be necessary. I therefore wrote to General 
Stark desiring him to send a reinforcement to Coll. 
Willett if he judg'd it could be done without too much 
weakening the force at Saratoga, but I conclude the 
same arguments will operate with him in this case as 
against Coll. Tupper's going to Schenectady, that upon 
the whole he will judge no troops can be spar'd from that 
post. However, by an express which arriv'd at 3 o'clock, 
p. m., the 26 th , I am much easier on the subject. The 
letter which came to hand from Coll. Willett was dated 
the 25 th ins*, 8 o'clock, p. m., at Johnstown, and was 
directed to Captain Martial (commanding at this city 
previous to my arrival), desiring a quantity of ammuni- 
tion might be immediately sent him, as he had unfortu- 
nately lost four boxes crossing the river, and does not 
give a particular account of the action, but by a letter 
which came enclos'd from Willett's doctor it appears the 
action was severe. He mentions 40 or 50 wounded 
men, that in the beyrinintr of the action Coll. Willett lost 
his field piece, but recovered it again, that it was hard to 
say who gain'd the victory, but that Willett remain'd 
master of the field. The express rider who brings this 
account says he stood sentry over twenty two British 
prisoners Coll. Willett had taken and sent to Fort 
Hunter. Taking all the accounts together I think 
Willett must have had the advantage. I immediately 
sent on a quantity of ammunition to him and am every 
moment in expectation of farther intelligence. From the 



294 THE HEATH PAPEES. [1781. 

bravery and abilities of the man I am induc'd to believe 
he will do himself honor and his country essential service. 
Since writing this letter an express has arriv'd from 
Schenectady ; the intelligence is enclos'd. This moment 
I have rec d a line from Governor Clinton, informing of 
the surrendery of Lord Cornwallis with his whole army 
on the 17 th ins*. I wait a confirmation with few doubts 
of its veracity. 

I am, dear Sir, with much respect and esteem, 
Your very humb. serv*. 

Stirling, M. G. 

Major Gen 1 Heath. 



DAVID COBB* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Head Quakters before York, Oct r 28 th , 1781. 

Dear Gen ll , — I have been honored with your favour 
of, I forgot the date, under a direction for Major Gibbs; 
in consequence of which I had the pleasure of reading 
two of your letters. The great events of this quarter 
must be perticularly known to you before this. The 
British surrendered more than 7,000 land forces, includ- 
ing officers; 2,000 suits of cloaths ; 75 pieces of brass 
ordnance, 141 iron ; about 9,000 stands of arms and 2,000 
£ sterling in the military chest. Most of the officers are 
paroled for Europe ; the soldiers marched, three days 
after their surrendery, for their lodgement at Winchester 

* Gen. David Cobb was born in Attleborough, Mass., Sept. 14, 1748, graduated at 
Harvard College in 1766, and died in Boston April 17, 1830. After graduating he studied 
medicine, and began a successful practice in his native town. On the breaking out of the 
Revolution he took an active part in public affairs; and early in 1777 was made a lieutenant- 
colonel in the army. He remained in the service until some time after the close of the war, 
when he returned home, and resumed the practice of his profession. In 1784 he was made 
a judge of the Court of Common Pleas, which office he filled for twelve years, being also 
during a considerable part of the time a major-general in the Massachusetts militia. From 
1789 to 1793 he was Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, and in the 
latter year became a member of Congress. He also held numerous other important and 
honorary positions. See Bugbee's Memorials of the Mass. Society of the Cincinnati, pp. 
136-141.— Eds. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 295 

in this State. Most capital blow, and what our enemies 
must feel very sensibly, more especially as it has taken 
place in this quarter of the continent where they tho't 
themselves perfectly secure of conquest. Arrangements 
are now forming for the future distribution of the army ; 
perhaps his Excellency with the northern troops will 
soon make you a visit. Gen 11 Greene will be reinforced. 
Count Rochambeau will probably remain here, and Count 
de Grasse will, if the British dare face him, give them 
another flogging, and then obey the orders of his master. 
You will be kind enough to forward the inclosed to 
Mess rs Paine and Russell, and inform Harry Jackson that 
I shall not write him very soon, not because I have 
received no letters from him, but that I feel as lazy as he 
does. Give my love to your family and all our friends, 
and believe me ever, with respect, 

Your sincere friend and obed* servant. 

David Cobb. 

Maj r Gen 11 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Oct r 30 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 16 th and since with the glorious news of the comple- 
tion of your wishes in the capture of Earl Cornwallis and 
his army, on which I pray your Excellency accept my 
most sincere and hearty congratulations. 

I have been carefully watching the enemy in this 
quarter, determined to give them a blow wherever it 
appeared practicable, but altho their force has been much 
lessened, what has remained, the disposition of it, the 
state of these works, and the difficulty of geting at 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 229, 230.— Eds. 



296 THE HEATH PAPEKS. [1781. 

them, have not afforded even a tollerable prospect of 
success, except in some inconsiderable instances where 
we have, and still are aiming to strike them ; the move- 
ments of the enemy at the northward, have obliged me 
to detach one brigade of regular troops to that quarter ; 
a strong detachment of picked troops are also by order 
of the Board of War escorting the specie from Boston to 
Philadelphia. The bulk of the old soldiers and flower of 
this army are detached to- the southward. The remainder 
are principally recruits, and many of them such as an 
officer would not wish to undertake any great enterprise 
with, but your Excellency may be assured no oppertunity 
that offers shall be lost, if in our power to improve it. 

I some time since sent Lord Sterling to the north- 
ward, to take the command in that quarter in case the 
enemy advanced in force and not otherwise, as the army 
would become too unwieldy for Gen 1 Stark. 

The last evening I received a letter from Governor Clin- 
ton, dated the 29 th , in which he observes, — " Since writing 
you yesterday a report is brought by a gentleman imme- 
diately from Albany that on Wednesday or Thursday last 
Colonel Willet had an action with the enemy at or near 
Johnstown. The enemy consisted of about 500, and 
Willet had about an equal number of levies and militia. 
The particulars had not arrived at Albany when the gen- 
tleman left it, but from the general tenor of the informa- 
tion it w T ould appear that Willet kept the ground tho 
without gaining any capital advantage. He had forty 
killed and wounded, took some British prisoners, but the 
other loss of the enemy is not mentioned. If proper 
measures are taken at Saratoga it will be almost impos- 
sible for the enemy to return to Crown Point, and I am 
informed that the troops at Saratoga were in motion." 

As the force at Saratoga is very considerable, and sev- 
eral enterprising officers with them, I am in hourly 
expectation of receiving not only the particulars of 






1781.] JOHN MOYLAN. 297 

Colonel Willet's action bat something much more 
interesting. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



JOHN MOYLAN TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Boston, 2 d Nov, 1781. 

Sir, — I received your favour of the 3 d ult°, with one 
inclosed for Governor Hancock which was delivered in 
course, and I shoud have done myself the honor of 
addressing you before now had I any thing decisive 
to communicate to you, respecting my errand to this 
place; but after a good deal of trouble and difficulty, it 
was not before the 23 d inst* that any thing had been 
determined on. I must, however, do the Governor jus- 
tice to say that I have found him from the first moment 
earnestly disposed to contribute, as much as in his power, 
to the dispatch of my business. 

I have at last the pleasure to inform you that 35 
waggons loaded with clothing are now on the way, and 
that the whole, I expect, will be in motion in the course 
of a few days. There are a number of recruits at Spring- 
field, as I am informed, preparing to go on to camp, 
which will answer the end of a detached guard from the 
army, and will enable me to dispense with your assist- 
ance untill the goods arrive at Fishkill, w ch will be on 
18 th , 20 th , and 25 th inst*. Between 80 and 90 waggons 
will take this clothing from that place to Philadelphia, by 
the way of Sussex Court House, in as many divisions as 
Colonel Hughs will judge most convenient. You will 
therefore, Sir, be pleased to order a detachment of as 



298 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

many men as you may think necessary for the protection 
of the goods to attend the waggons as far as the place of 
their destination, unless they are relieved by another 
guard, which the Board of War will probably order to 
meet them on the way. 

I take the liberty of referring you to the inclosed 
letter to M r Brooks, w ch is left open for your perusal, and 
beg leave to request it may on rec* hereof be enjoined in 
general orders, that the mode of making out the returns 
of receiving and issuing the clothing be henceforward 
strictly conform ble to the regulations prescribed in the 
resolve of the 18 th June, a copy of w ch I had the honor to 
send you from Newburg. The clothing I came here in 
quest of will not, I apprehend, be adequate to the wants 
of the rest of the troops. I have, however, good hopes to 
be able to make up any deficiency in a short time after 
my return to Phil a ; what gives me pain is that it will not 
be in my power to make as early a distribution of this 
clothing as I coud wish. Every moment's delay adds to 
my uneasiness, but more dispatch on my part coud not 
have been made and I hope the army will do me the 
justice to think so, when it is considered that, notwith- 
standing all the difficulties I had to encounter, the goods 
have been all landed, put in a good condition for the 
road, and for the greater part set in motion in the space 
of three weeks from the date of my arrival here. 

Give me leave, Sir, to congratulate you most heartily 
on the late glorious events to the southward, which have 
added so much lustre to the American arms, and which 
must for ever endear the name of a Frenchman to this 
country. 

I have the honor to be, very respectf y , Sir, 
Y r most hbb. s*. 

John Moylan, Clo r Gen\ 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 299 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JONATHAN POLLARD AND 
SAMUEL BARRETT. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Nov 3 rd , 1781. 

Gentlemen, — Your favor of the 21 st of Sep 1 and sun- 
dry papers enclosed came duly to hand by Colonel Hatch. 
I have delayd an earlier answer that he might be the 
bearer of it to you. I shall be happy when it falls in my 
power to serve you, or either of you. In your present 
request as the papers are stated I cannot do it, as they 
contain some things novel to me, and others very 
differant from my apprehension of them. 

I will just state you the several circumstances to which 
your application refers as they were transacted by me, 
and remain on my mind. When I called on General 
Burgoyne for a settlement of the accounts of supplies 
furnished the troops under the Convention of Saratoga, 
after a long discussion of the subject I agreed with him, 
which was committed to writing and mutually signed by 
us, that he should pay the quarter master's accounts of 
fuel, forage, & c , in specie, that a certain quantity of pro- 
visions should be sent from Newport to the harbour of 
Boston in a given time, to replace in part such as had 
been supplied by our commissaries, and a further quan- 
tity should be sent from New York also in given time, 
that for the fullfillment of this agrement and to pay 
any deficiency that might happen in the provisions sent 
falling short of the quantity supplied, a pledge in specie 
was to be lodged in my hands, the ballance of which 
after the acco ts were settled was to be paid into the hands 
of General Phillips. Matters being thus settled I sent 
Colonel Pollard with General Burgoyne to Rhode Island, 
to receive the specie in payment of the fuel acco* and 
the pledge which was to remain in my hands and safely 



300 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

convey it to Boston, which was his whole commission, and 
requested M r Barrett to go with and assist him ; the com- 
mission was executed, the money received and brought to 
Boston, and the matter conducted to my full approbation, 
except in the instance of consenting to receive (if I do 
not mistake the sum, for all this is on memory only) 
£ 288 commissary's and clerk's wages in paper money, 
which I disapproved, because not expressed in the com- 
mission, and after much altercation with General Phillips 
obliged him to pay it in specie. All these several matters 
were fully and at large represented to Congress, those 
respecting my agrement, & c , previous to your return from 
Newport ; those of your bringing the money and my 
agrement with General Pigot through the medium of M r 
Morrison, a British commissary, after yonr return ; they 
are all now in the files of Congress, and their answers in 
mine. I cannot therefore give any certificates but such 
as strictly correspond therewith. 

Having thus stated the premises you will allow me, 
Gentlemen, to give you my opinion thereon, which is 
that Colonel Pollard, being one of my family, a publick 
officer receiving publick pay and rations, was sent as such 
by me on this publick business, and I cannot conceive 
that he can on any principal whatever claim any thing 
extra more than his extra expences. M r Barrett was in a 
situation differant, his address and abilities in business 
induced me to request him to go with and assist Col 
Pollard. Numbers of gentlemen in Boston would have 
been happy in the opportunity. It was my intention, 
and what I many times expressed, to pay his expences if 
any there were, and such compensation for his time as he 
judged reasonable, and if the account had been presented 
an order on the quarter master, or paymaster w 7 ould have 
been immediately issued. 

All risk and hazzard of the money lay with Colonel 
Pollard as the military officer who was instructed to take 



1781.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 301 

measures for its security, and no unavoidable accident 
could have been chargable on him. 

On the whole, Gentlemen, if any application is made to 
Congress it is my opinion it should be by M r Barrett 
only, bottomed on my request to him to assist Col Pol- 
lard, supported by my certificate that the service was 
performed, and that he has not received a compensation 
for his trouble. These, Gentlemen, are my sentiments 
as a man, as your friend, and as the servant of the 
publick. 

I am, with great regard, Gentlemen, 

Your most obed* serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

Colonel Jon a Pollard and Sam l Barrett, Esqr. 



' ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, Nov r 7 th , 1781. 

SiPv, — M r Yanzandt reports to me that the teams are 
beat out, and that we are not to expect but very little more 
wood from below. This is disagreable intelligence, as 
the garrison is not properly supplied for the winter. We 
have failed in what I always knew w T e should fail in ; 
transportation to the water. 

The vessels have not been employed above half the 
time since we began, owing entirely to the failure of 
transportation. Had this not been the case, we should 
by this have an ample supply, and this drudgery done 
in the men's old cloathes. In our present prospect the 
garrison will be obliged in February or March to be 
collecting and backing wood, to the great disadvantage 
of their new cloathes and their shoes ; and when the roads 
will be deep. These consequences may still be avoided 
and the men employed in manoeuvering when the spring 



302 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

opens, if teams are now furnished. The stock for the 
general and staff is about one hundred and sixty cords, 
which is by no means sufficient, as it is old wood. It is 
not equal to eighty of solid wood. This will fall far short 
of an ample provision, considering the number of general 
officers expected on. I was the less anxious for that line 
from a full conviction of my being able to provide an 
abundance before the first day of December, if the wood 
was carted to the landing. No pains or attention has been 
spared by me or the garrison to lay in a sufficient maga- 
zine. But the failure has not rested with us. The coun- 
try have no right to expect we are to cover them from 
the enemy, shivering with the cold, when they have 
teams and plenty of forrage to cart us wood ; and a fiew 
hundred cords will suffice. It is enough for the officers 
and soldiers to want bread, and not be frozen with the 
cold. Wood for this post has for years been carted by 
impressed teams. If I am not mistaken you are author- 
ised to impress them. The call is pressing, the season 
will not wait for us. The troops may be very illy sup- 
plied with provision during the winter ; and we ought 
not to expose them to the additional hardship or tempta- 
tion of want of wood, least we see another mutiny this 
winter. 

Those who may be displeased at your availing yourself 
of the benifit of the law intended for the comfort and 
security of the army, will be the first to censure you if any 
accident should take place for want of that necessary 
article. If the Legislature should pass a law to impress 
forrage, the collection will be late, the roads will become 
very bad, and the public teams will be so weak that they 
cannot be employed for that purpose ; so that finally you 
must press teams, or expose this garrison to suffer, which 
neither God nor the Legislature asks of us. I have 
judged it my duty to you, to the garrison, and to the 
country to make you this representation, that I may 



1781.] WILLIAM IIEATn. 303 

hereafter be acquited of every consequence which may 
take place for want of a proper supply of wood for this 
garrison. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, 

Your most obedient, humble servant. 

Alex r McDougall. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Nov 7 th , 1781. 

Sir, — Several of the people called Quakers some time 
since, as they say, came from Long Island, have been 
into the country and yesterday were returning, were 
stoped by the officer on the lines and sent up to me. 
Colonel Hughes who was at my quarters when they 
came knew one of them, a M r Rickman, who he saies 
was alwaies reputed a disaffected person in New York. 
These people alwaies express much inoffensiveness and 
that they do not meddle with politicks, but I have known 
some of them to collect very good intelligence. If they 
will do it on one side, they will on the other ; however, 
not knowing what has been the mode of conduct with 
this sort of people I have sent them to your Excellency. 
They own that they some time since applied to General 
Washington for leave to come over from Long Island to 
the main, and that he refused them. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath, M. Gen 1 . 

His Excellency Governor Clinton. 



04 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781, 



LORD STIRLING TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Albany, Nov r 10, 1781. 
(Secret) 

Dear Sir, — The circumstances of Major Ross's situ- 
ation, who commanded a party of the enemy amounting 
to 607 rank and file, the loss of near one half of the 
recruits that went from New York for Quebec in August 
last, together with S* Leger's probable scituation at 
present, will greatly reduce the enemy's force in 
Canada, and I think presents a fair oppertunity for 
carrying on a winter's expedition into that country, at 
least so far as to reduce S fc Johns, Chamble, and Mont- 
real, and to be ready to proceed to Quebec early in the 
spring. The necessary preparations for such an expedi- 
tion w T ould be but few and those not expensive ; the 
cheif article would be about five or six hundred strong, 
three barred, wood sleys, the cost of which cannot amount 
to above 30/ each. These might be built partly at Fish- 
kill and partly at this place ; and might be used either 
for this expedition or for one to New York, or both ; 
indeed, I belive it is the only way to take it without 
shipping, as theirs are generally rendered useless by the 
first of January, about which time there generally is 
favourable weather to go in with sleys over the ice, and 
out of reach of the enemy's cannon. It will then be time 
enough to prosecute the other, as the ice in some parts 
of Lake Champlain is seldom strong 'till the first of 
February. If any part of this should be adopted there 
will be no time to loose in the preparations. 

I am, very sincerely, your most humble servant. 

Stirling. 

General Heath. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 305 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Continental Village, Nov 10 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — I am happy to hear that you have made 
your particular arraugments for any emergency that 
may happen. 

Part of the company of artillery you refer to are 
ordered on a command ; when they return they shall be 
ordered to West Point. 

The militia men in the garrisons of Verplank's and 
Stoney Points shall be releived by an equal number of 
regular troops ; the D. A. G. shall order the releif from 
the four brigades in the field for the present. 

When I had the honor to command this department in 
1779, I gave pointed and particular instructions to the 
officers commanding the garrisons of Verplank's and 
Stony Points for their conduct in common cases and in 
case of their being attacked by the enemy, which were 
approved by the Commander in Chief. I continued them 
the last year and I cannot find that they have since been 
altered ; they are perfectly understood by the command- 
ing officers. They are that the garrisons respectively 
shall consist of about sixty men, amply supplied with 
twenty or thirty days salted provisions, which are to be 
alwaies kept in reserve, and that the posts be defended to 
the last extremity. The commanding officers aim to have 
them provided, and expect to defend them accordingly. 
I would still have it impressed on them. 

It is a standing order that no superfluous stores are to 
be left at the ferry, and a few days since I cautioned 
Colonel Hughes to se that it was observed. There is 
likewise a standing order for the removal of the boats 
when the enemy are coming up the river. 

A movement which we have in contemplation forbids 
my sending two companies to the north and middle 

20 



306 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

redoubts at present, but there is a detachment of Con- 
necticut troops repairing their hutts, who you may 
direct on an alarm to repair to those redoubts. There is 
another at the New Hampshire hutts who shall receive 
similar orders ; and in case of a serious movement of the 
enemy I will seasonably throw other reinforcements into 
those works. You need be under no anxiety about 
them. 

From the situation in which you represent the chain 
to be, it is best to have it taken up immediately. 

I have the honor to be, with very great regard, dear 
Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. If you think the force you have at present is 
not sufficient for the defence of the works please let me 
know it immediately. 

M. Gen 1 M c Dougall. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, November 10 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I am honord with your favours of the 7 th and 
8 th instant. The attention paid to the boats correspond 
minutely with the orders of his Excellency respecting 
them. And yours will be punctually executed whenever 
the weather permits. 

I always designate the alarm posts of the troops I 
have the honor to command, as soon as they come into 
garrison. My arrangments are made for the defence of 
the garrison in every particular, so far as I am furnished 
with means, and whatever is deficient will be supplied as 
fast as those come to hand. 

Col° Crane informs me he is weak in artillery men, 
and that there is a company with the army which can 



1781.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 307 

be spared. I wish this may meet your approbation. If 
you fall back from your present position, the ranges for 
field artillery are very fiew, till you get above the 
mountains. 

The time of service of the militia is rapidly expiring 
every week, and a part of the garrisons of Stoney and 
Verplank's Points are of those corps. It will greatly 
facilitate my arrangments and promote the service, if 
you should think proper, to releive those men by regular 
troops. This garrison is so harassed with various kinds 
of fatigue that we can ill spare a releif for them from 
here. 

If a captain's command of the Connecticut troops, 
well officered, were put in the north and south redoubts^ 
I should imagine it would ultimately fall in w r ith your 
arrangments; and releive me from some anxiety. It is 
no new thing in service to sacrifise advanced posts and 
corps for the advantage and general security of an 
army. In this light I always considered the posts at 
Stoney and Verplank's Points ; and I acted on this 
principle in 1779, which I am perswaded was the means 
of saving this post that year. I am not happy enough 
to be possed of your opinion on this subject, although 
those posts are understood to be under my orders in 
ordinary circumstances. Yet I wish to have them under 
the present. 

As you command in the department, it is necessary 
under the aspect of the enemy's object, that your orders 
respecting those posts, should be given in the most 
explicit manner, under every contingency that may 
possibly happen, if I am to be responsible for them, and 
I beg to be favoured with them as soon as possible. There 
is time now for deliberation on the subject, which may not 
be the case whenever the wind shifts. I take the liberty 
to be thus urgent, as it is a fact perfectly familiar to me 
that whenever the enemy git above the frize, near Fort 



! 



308 THE HEATO PAPERS. [1781. 

Washington, half a tide will bring them up to King's 
Ferry, with the fresh southerly winds which prevail at 
this season of the year, and which always succeeds a hard 
northerly wind. If the enemy intend a serious move- 
ment up the river, his hope of success must be in a coup 
de main. He will therefore not stop with his principal 
force at King's Ferry if the wind does not fail him, or 
some other accident retard his motion. For altho' the 
batteries at those Points will greatly wreck his shipping 
if they anchor, yet with a fresh breeze he will pass with- 
out sustaining much damage. For these reasons would 
it not be proper the dep y q. master and boatmen should 
have their orders early ? 

As to the chain, it has been ready to draw in four days 
past ; but the violent wind has prevented us ; and it is 
now in such a state that we are in danger of loosing it, 
unless it is brought in, or secured parmanently. If this 
is done in the advanced season of the year, it may employ 
the whole garrison to the 1 st of March to cut it out of the 
ice, which was the case in 1778. And as the enemy can- 
not think of setting down seriously before this place at 
this late period of the year, an attempt to pass the post- 
would be a risque without an object. Indeed, I wish they 
would attempt it; nay I wish every ship in New York 
was above the post. 

The quantity of wood laid in is considerable ; but the 
quality of a great part of it is very light, so that by ex- 
perience of our burning it we cannot estimate it at more 
than a quarter part of wood of a durable quality. 

If my memory serves me the law of this State for 
impressing teams invests only the Governor and the 
commanding general with that power. If this con- 
struction is the true one, your order to Col. Hughes 
for teams to transport wood will be ineffectual, as those 
in the public service are beat out. And if the garrison 
suffers for want of wood, neither they nor the State are 



1781.] BENJAMIN TALLMADGE. 309 

to blame. The Legislature have passed the necessary 
laws for releiving the army in cases of emergency and 
distress. The garrison- have done its duty. If providing 
wood for it at this, day is not a case of emergency, and 
if the want of it in winter is not distress, I know not what 
emergency or distress is. If we suffer distress, and suffer 
it we shall, if teams are not provided in time, it will 
add to our distress that it will be imputable to our chief, 
who has it now in his power to prevent it. 

The bearer waits your orders for Verplank's and Stoney 
Points, in the point of light T have mentioned. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, your humble servant. 

Alex r M c Dougall. 

Major General Heath. 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fairfield, Nov r 12 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — In my last letter I had the honor to 
inform you of my intention to cross to Long Island on 
the business of which we had heretofore conversed. My 
silence since that time must have given you some 
anxiety, but when I assure you that I have not been able 
to send you the least information of my situation since 
I went over to this time, having been detained on Long 
Island by a most tedious and uncommon north west w 7 ind, 
I trust you will be satisfied. 

About a week ago I left my detachment under the 
charge of Major Trescott, and embarked at this place 
for the purpose above hinted at. When we arrived on 
the other shoar, I soon found that the enemy were on 
all sides of us, a detachment of about 200 having gone 
to the eastward to cover the foragers, and about 20 or 
30 more being posted a little to the westward of us, at a 
place called Craneneck, to protect some vessels, &c. On 



310 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

the same night of our landing, having but about 20 con- 
tinental soldiers with me, we marched about five miles 
to attack the latter detachment. The enemy were ap- 
prized of our approach and immediately retired by water. 
Having finished in a little time the business which I 
expected, and which will be noted in a letter accompany- 
ing this, I waited anxiously for an opportunity to return 
to this shoar. At 3 o'clock yesterday morning, for the 
first time in 8 days past, the wind began to abate and 
promised a good time to return. At the same time I 
got information that the detachment which heretofore 
guarded the enemies' vessels at Craneneck, had re- 
turned. As the enterprize could not delay us long, and 
anxious after all our fatigue to give them a blow before 
we returned, we were immediately in motion for this 
purpose, and at sunrise were within a small distance of 
them. From a thicket I discovered their guard on a 
high hill near the shoar, at the foot of which was a fine 
large schooner, a number of boats, and the remainder of 
their party. As we had to cross an open field before we 
could reach them I was apprehensive they would betake 
themselves to their boats, but in this case I was certain 
we should secure the vessel. The troops were ordered to 
advance with the utmost expedition without firing on the 
guard, which the enemy perceiving, immediately quit the 
strong eminence in the most dastardly manner and im- 
mediately got on board their boats. As soon as we reached 
the hill we began a brisk fire on them, which continued 
from within 20 yards till they were out of our reach. 
We took but one prisoner, but discovered several killed, 
and from our nearness as well as from the oars which fell 
overboard, a considerable number of them must have 
been killed and wounded. We immediately took pos- 
session of our prize, but unfortunately for us she was 
aground, and as it was not prudent to continue there 
long, we stripped her completely of all her rigging, &c, 



i 



1781.] BENJAMIN" TALLMADGE. 311 

and to our great mortification were obliged to set her on 
fire. The rigging was all bro't to this place, and as the 
men with me have undergone much by the cold and 
more by hunger, having had little else to eat than clams 
for several days, I propose with your consent to divide 
the proceeds among them. In this case your order for 
condemnation will be necessary. 

I am further happy to assure you that the enemies' 
three vessels which some time ago I informed you had 
drove ashore near the Old mans are compleatly destroyed : 
their rigging is concealed and will be bro't off. 

It has been matter of extreme mortification to me 
that a detachment of the enemy should be so far from 
support down the island and that I could not return to 
visit them with my whole detachment. This considera- 
tion has mortified me more than all our other sufferings, 
which when you reflect on our situation I am sure you 
will not think were small. 

I am just honored with your letter of the 8 th which 
Major Trescott has complyed with in my absence. I 
shall set off this day to join Col. Sheldon. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest regard and 
esteem, d r Gen 1 , 

Your most obed* and h ble serv*. 

Benj a Tallmadge. 

P. S. Inclosed is a return from Capt Brewster for 
cartridges and flints which he needs exceedingly. The 
bearer will wait your order to receive them. 

B. T. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



BENJAMIN TALLMADGE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fairfield, Nov' 12 th , 1781. 

Dear Gen l ? — The object of my late visit to Long 
Island you may recollect was to effect an interview with 



312 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

certain persons who had been previously directed to 
make discoveries on the banks of the N. River near Fort 
Washington. Just as I crossed I rec d a line from S. G., 
informing that he would do the needful. As he was re- 
turning from N. Y. unfortunately for ns he was taken 
up on suspicion of being a spy, and is still detained. I 
frequently heard from him while I was on L. Island, and 
tho' no papers were found on him which could lead to a 
discovery, he is still detained on suspicion. 

Another person who was very friendly was confined at 
the same time. 

I am, however, informed by H. J. who was direct from 
N. Y. that Sir H. Clinton had landed his troops on Staten 
Island, and would bring them up to York as soon as the 
wind would permit. 

That the whole fleet had returned to the Hook without 
having seen the French fleet. That 16 sail of the line 
were ordered to be ready for sea immediately, and the 
victualler of the fleet said they were to go to the West 
Indies under the command of Adm 1 Graves, and that 
Digby with the remainder would probably stay at N. 
York. 

That Sir H. Clinton was universally condemned for the 
loss of Cornwallis, and that the Tories, who find no terms 
allowed to those who had joined Cornwallis, but must 
await their doom at the hands of the civil magistrate, 
are very clamorous. They say the protection they were 
promised is not extended to them, and that they had 
rather fling themselves on the mercy of their country 
than trust to a capitulation made by B. officers in which 
their interests are not considered. The merchants at 
N. Y. have some of them turned Whig;s, because Gen 1 
Washington did not suffer the property of the merchants 
at York and Gloucester to be plundered. 

Tho' I was disappointed in the accurate intelligence 
which I promised myself of the situation of the enemy 



1781.] SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK. 313 

on the north end of York Island by the confinement of 
S. G., yet I learn that the strength and position of the 
corps in that q r is nearly as you have heretofore con- 
ceived them to be. The Yager infantry frequently send 
patroles along the bank of the river, but have no stand- 
ing sentinels. From the magazine below F* Washington 
south there is sometimes a patrole of Yager horse, more 
to prevent surprizing the Gen 1 at Morris's house than 
any thing else. His guard consists of about 20 men 
commanded by a subaltern, and the Yager horse have a 
chain of sentinels in front of their pickets and a few in 
rear of their huts, but these are so near that they are 
of but little service. The Donop corps are more alert 
and better guarded. They have a chain of sentinels 
round their encampment and patrolls. 

As I shall soon be in the vicinity of camp, if any enter- 
prize should be undertaken will come to h d q rs . 

I have the honor to be, d r Gen 1 , with great regard, 
Your most obed t serv*. 

Benj a Tallmadge. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



SECRET INTELLIGENCE FROM NEW YORK. 

November 18, 1781. 

Dear Sir, — I have not time to give you the partic- 
ulars of the trial of M r S and myself; let it suffice to say 
that we were acquited by the court with honour, while 
our acusers have the mortification of lying in provoost. 

There is nothing material at present for me to write, 
as you have the intelligence from [erased]. There has 
been a movement since he came out of N. Y. All the 
troops who went out with Clinton on their return landed 
on Staten Island. They have since come to Long Island, 
and are cantoond from Brookline to Increase Carpenter's 
house, two miles to the eastward of Jamaica. 20 sail of 



314 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

the line have gone to Jamaica, one is going to England, 
the remainder are to stay at N. York. Two or three 
rigments moved from N. Y. to M c Gouen's pass on Thurs- 
day and Fry day last, and a very considerable artillery. 

I wish you would facilitate the procuring a flagg for 
the purpose of getting my wife over. 

I am, &c. S. G. 



JOHN GLOVER* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Sir, — I beg leave to inform you that my expences are 
so cruelly great that I cannot, nor am I obliged to, sup- 
port them (had I it in my power) any longer. This 
being the sixth day my horses have been keept on hay 
purchas d by the hundred with my own money. 

I do therefore request it as a favor, you d give me leave 
of absence, to visit my family, retire into the country, 
where I can find keeping at a less expence, or appoint 
me to a command equal to my rank, where I may be 
supplied with such necessary forage in common with 
other officers as y e public affords ; and that you would 
please to order some other person to preside at y e board 
appointed to settle the subalterns' rank, — it being 
incompatible for me to attend under my present circum- 
stances ; were they otherwise the business cannot be 
don without paper, that being an artical exceedingly 
scarce, (except at head quarters, and the q. master's 
office); and 1 haveing* no money to purchase any, it 
would be altogether impossible for me to proceed any 
farther on that business. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, your most ob dt hbl ser*. 

Jn° Glover, M. General. 

Continental Village, 20 th Nov br , 1781. 
Hono ble Major Gen" Heath. 

* For a notice of General Glover, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 118 n. — Eds. 



1781.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 315 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, 29 th November, 1781. 5 p. m. 

Sir, — I was duly honord with your favour of yester- 
day. Besides the considerations I stated to you in my 
last, of the justice of retaining some rum for the extra 
fatigue done here for the army in general, there are 
others which I forgot then to mention. Parties from 
your army frequently stop here, greatly fatigued, and 
assert their provision is out and press for an issue of rum 
and provision. In general those articles have been is- 
sued, altho' it was out of the quota of those articles 
alloted to the garrison, the consequence of which has 
been that we have been longer without good bread than 
the troops under your immediate command. For altho' 
the number of days we have been destitute of that article 
may not much exceed, or perhaps equal, those which the 
corps on the east side have been deficient, yet the differ- 
ence of any in our favour has been owing to our eating 
the flour condemned at, and rejected by your army. We 
have been so hard pressed with labour and the want of 
bread, that the troops eagerly grasped at any thing to 
satisfy their craving hunger. It is therefore just that 
an allotment be made in the reserve of provision and rum 
for those parties besides that for the extra fatigue of the 
garrison. For as we are the pack horses on the com- 
munication, none of our quota of provisions or rum should 
at our loss be issued to parties not belonging to the gar- 
rison, while they or the corps to which they belong reap 
the benifit of what is appropriated to the garrison. I 
flatter myself from the justice of your heart that you 
will please to order a provision for this service. And 
I imagin in the present position of the army on the east 
side, three or four hundred rations a week will supply 
the calls from those contingencies, — when you were 



316 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

below it would require more. To prevent those parties 
imposing on us, they should have a certificate from their 
commissary to what time they have been served, or they 
will not have any order for provision from this post. If 
my memory serves me, this is agreable to an act of Con- 
gress. I ask for no favour for the garrison, nor do I 
doubt your readiness to distribute all the public means 
in your power eaqually to the troops under your orders. 

It is not my duty, nor my inclination, to dispute 
the propriety or justice of detailing the escort for the 
prisoners from the whole army. But I can with great 
truth assure you, oar fatigue is very severe. This morn- 
ing for want of forras;e, we have been obliged to detach 
a large party to bring in coal and shingles from four 
miles distance, to keep the general armory at work and 
to finish the stone guard house. The blacksmiths and 
armorures having been two days idle for want of coal ; 
and the jobbers on the guard house four for want of 
shingles. Multiplied as our calls are for fatigue out of 
the garrison, incident to the communication, we have 
more of it local than those out of it can conceive. The 
distant works are mostly tolerably well garrisoned, as 
they ought to be, and have to build their barracks and 
collect the materials for these as well as their woodland 
back both for some distance in the fall of the hills, some 
of which are very steep in their assent, and others of 
them mere precipices, while all that can be spared from 
proper military duty are on fatigue of various kinds ; and 
no small party detailed to cut and prepare shingles for 
the general hospital. Besides those latter duties, the 
garrison have been greatly born down with the long 
necessary fatigue of collecting and backing their wood 
for want of teams, which has done much injury to their 
shoes and cloathes. 

In this condition, your orders of yesterday direct, 
" That a captain, three subs, four serg t3 and sixty four 



1781.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 317 

rank and file well cloathed are to be detailed tomorrow 
and proceed on command. The captain will receive 
orders at the Connecticut hutts, where the party will 
parade at twelve o'clock, A. M." This order is farther 
explained by one sent by the D. A. General, a copy of 
which I take the liberty of enclosing. By the last order 
the 2 nd brigade is to furnish a captain, sergeant, corporal, 
drum, and fife, and twenty seven privates. And it is 
addressed to Captain Abraham Williams, sub inspector of 
the 2 nd Massachusetts brigade. This is a very unequal 
detail of that command, if the 2 nd brigade was collected 
and not subject to any extraordinary fatigue, but when 
the contrary is the case, it deserves a name which a 
respect to you forbids me to mention. But this is not 
the only evil on the face of the last order. It is ad- 
dressed to Captain Williams, who is not the executive 
staff officer of the garrison, but for a part of it. And 
Captain Williams from his office is under no obligation to 
communicate the order to me. If it is his duty to obey 
the order for one man, it would be his duty to do it if 
the whole brigade was subject to a like order, and thus 
a principal part of the garrison might be ordered off 
without my having any knowledge of the order. This 
surely is not military. And I perswade myself neither 
the detail nor the address of the order came from you. 
If the party could have been appointed, they would in all 
probability have been sent off unknown to me. If I had 
not the most favourable opinion of Col. Grosvenor, he 
would have been served with an arrest. But it would 
be doing him great injustice to attribute the one or the 
other to any cause but a mistake. Notwithstanding the 
injustice of the detail and the informality of the order, it 
would have been complied with ; but Capt n Williams 
asserts it was not in his power to do it, if the detachment 
was appointed according to the order. General Paterson 
is directed to have his brigade minutely inspected as to 



o 



18 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 



their cloathing, and to make a report of its condition under 
the hands of all the officers of his corps ; which shall be 
immediately transmited to you on my receiving it. 

Whatever orders you shall please to give, whether they 
are clearly or doubtfully in the line of service, shall be 
implicitly executed. But permit me at the same time 
to inform you that it is my determination for the future 
to disobey every unmilitary and absurd order which may 
be given by any of your executive officers, and to put 
them in arrest, however disagreable it may be to me, 
if any such are handed to this garrison ; not from any 
personal dislike to them, but to have the path of service 
more fixed and setled than it seemes to have been, since 
I have lately had the honor of serving under your orders. 

I am, Sir, with due respect, 

Your most obe*, humble servant. 

Alex r McDougall. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Nov 1 29 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Yours of this date is just handed to me. 
As the small supply of rum we receive is distributed 
equally to all parts of the army, in due proportion to the 
rations issued by each commissary, the soldiers coming 
from one post to another have no right to expect to 
draw rum ; when it is necessary they should receive it 
before or after they perform their duty at the post to 
which they belong. As I am in hopes the present dis- 
tressing scarcity of flour is nearly over, and which alone 
renders a distribution of what we receive necessary in 
order to do equal justice to all the troops; any particular 
part being assigned for the purpose of comers and goers 
at the Point I think also unnecessary, for when there is 
a sufficiency in the magazine, the garrison commissary 



: 

I 

! 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 319 

can replenish his store when ever necessary. While the 
scarcity remains, and an equal proportion is given to 
every post and corps, it would be improper to have a 
reserve for those, who, beside partakeing of their equal 
share with their own corps, go to another post to get an 
addition. 

It was my orders that the escorte for the prisoners to 
Lancaster should be taken from the whole army, my 
motive was that of strict justice, all the troops are nearly 
clad alike, all are preparing their winter covering except 
the brigade at the Point, who fortunately for them were 
early sent to prepare and make their situation com- 
fortable, and notwithstanding the fatigue incident to the 
post, they are at present in easier circumstances than any 
other brigade of the army. I shall, you may rely, at all 
times endeavour to treat all the troops I have the honor 
to command with equal justice. When I had given my 
orders to the D. A. Gr. I had done with them. 

In the general orders of the 25 th I directed that an 
officer from the garrison should attend daily for orders, 
which would seasonably and properly convey any orders 
that might be issued. I can only say that I have alwais 
found Col Grosvenor acquainted with his duty and most 
assiduous to execute it, but why he addressed Cap* 
Williams instead of Cap fc Haskell in the instance you 
mention is not within the spheire of my knowledge. 

I have the honor to be, with great regard, dear Sir, 
Your obed* ser\ 

W. Heath. 

Major Gen 1 McDougall. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE CLINTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Nov r 30 th , 1781. 
Sir, — I am this morning honored with yours of the 
27 th . It was my intention that the two New Hampshire 



320 THE HEATH TAPERS. [1781. 

regiments now at the northward should winter in that 
quarter, and apprehended they would be sufficient for 
the posts on the Mohawk River also, after the time of 
service for which the levies are engaged expire. I have 
seasonably been ordering provisions to Albany, except 
flour, and cautioning Gen 1 Stark to avail himself of the 
best opportunity s to have them sent to those posts which 
will require them during the winter. I have written to 
the Commander in Chief and informed him of my inten- 
tion if he approves it. The two regiments above men- 
tioned will garrison the northern district. Their strength 
will probably be between three and four hundred each, 
which I think will be sufficient during the winter; if you 
think otherwise, I will thank you for a hint on the sub- 
ject. I cannot spare any regular troops for other of the 
western frontiers, and the State must provide for them 
if necessary. The moment I receive the approbation of 
the Commander in Chief I will direct General Stark to 
send a detachment seasonably to releive the levies on the 
Mohawk River. The distribution of the army to winter 
quarters is as follows, — the Jersey line near Morristown ; 
the New York line between that and the North River, 
perhaps near Pompton ; the Connecticut line at the 
hutts built by them the last year ; the Rhode Island reg 
brigaded with the Connecticut line ; two Massachusetts 
brigades at West Point, — one near the south redoubt 
on the east side of the river, and one regiment in the 
hutts built the last year by the New Hampshire troops ; 
the 2 nd reg 1 light dragoons in Connecticut; the artillery 
at West Point. Light parties will be kept on the lines, 
below Crompond and at Bedford for the protection of the 
country. I think there will be no alteration at the 
northward, unless Brigadier Gen 1 Hazen's reg* should go 
to that quarter instead of the two New Hampshire reg ts . 
This I shall know when I hear from the Commander in 
Chief. 



1781.] GEORGE CLINTON. 321 

I will thank you for information what places at the 
northward will be most probably exposed to the incur- 
sions of the enemy during the winter, and where and in 
what numbers the troops will be most advantageously 
cantoned. 

I have the honor to be, with very great respect & 
esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obed fc serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Clinton. 



GEORGE CLINTON TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Pougiikeepsie, Dec 1- 4 th , 1781. 

Sir, — I have been duly honored with your favors of 
the 26 th , 29 th , and 30 th Lilt . I am much obliged to you for 
the particular detail of the distribution of the army to 
winter quarters which you have given me, tho' it was not 
my intentions to have troubled you for more than what 
immediately related to the protection of the frontiers of 
this State. The two New Hampshire regiments, if they 
exceed 300 each, and the season should not prove milder 
than common so as to render the country more easy of 
access to light parties of the enemy, I am of opinion may 
by a judicious disposition answer the purposes for which 
they are intended, tho' if Hazen's could conveniently 
be added to that service it would not only ease the regi- 
ments in point of duty, which I fear will otherwise be 
severe, but give greater security and confidence to the 
exposed settlements. 

The posts usually occupied in the winter and, I believe, 
best calculated to cover the country, are Saratoga to the 
northward (from whence detachments can be made to 
White Creek and Ballston) and Fort Herkimer, Fort 

21 



322 THE IIEATn PAPERS. [1781. 

Rensselaer and Johnstown on the Mohawk River (from 
which small detachments can also occasionally be made 
to other small posts in their respective vicinities) and 
Schoharie, about thirty miles west of Albany. I am not 
so intimately acquainted with the importance of these 
different places relatively considered as to be able to de- 
termine what proportion of the troops each ought to 
have, but generally it appears to me that at least the 
largest regiment of the two ought to be destined to the 
western posts above mentioned, and this not diminished 
by any detachments which may be necessary to leave at 
Albany or Schenectady for the security of the public 
stores, & c . The northern frontier is not so extensive nor 
more exposed to the enemy and can derive more speedy 
and effectual succour from the militia. The western fron- 
tier of Ulster and Orange being more remote from the 
enemy's posts, and of course less liable to their incursions, 
especially in the winter season, may with greater ease 
be defended bv the militia of those counties, who are 
remarkably well affected and favorably situated for the 
purpose. With respect to Westchester county, it is so 
contiguous to and connected with the army and under 
the eye of the commanding officer oi the department that 
he can always best determine of the measures and force 
for its defence, and I w T ould therefore wish to be gov- 
erned by his advice as to the embodying any additional 
force for that quarter. It was the importunity of some 
of the principal inhabitants alone that could have induced 
me to mention the erecting of blockhouses in the vicinity 
of Bedford, and if they can be made contented without 
them I shall be perfectly so ; but I would gratify them 
with almost any thing rather than that they should aban- 
don their settlements. 

It is my opinion it will be best to treat all the per- 
sons taken by Col Willet as prisoners of war. If they 
should be delivered over to the civil authority of the 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 323 

State (if consistent with policy) it would be difficult, if 
not impracticable, to bring them to trial for the offences 
they have committed, and the result would be either an 
escape from our prisons or a liberation on bail, and we 
should in either case loose the advantage of an exchange. 
I am, with great respect & esteem, Sir, 

Your most obedient servant. 

Geo: Clinton. 

The Hon ble Major Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Dec r 4 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — The enclosed letters from General 
Bailey and M r Adams were handed to me a few days 
since by Cap t Edgar, the person refered to in those 
letters. Cap* Edgar's want of money has induced him 
not to think of proceeding farther southward. He is for 
the present gone to Albany, where he has several friends. 
He informs me that there is undoubtedly a plan of union 
matureiug between the British government in Canada 
and some of the leading men of Vermont which, it was 
said, would take place in the course of five months from 
the begining of last September ; that a Colonel Thomas 
Johnson, who belongs to the Grants and is a prisoner at 
Montreal, has interested himself in the matter with views 
of discovering their design, that if his exchange can be 
effected, he will discover the whole plan. Cap fc Edgar 
apprehends the enemy will be permitted to take some 
advantages in Vermont which will give them foothold 
when a peace takes place, and that their movement over 
the lakes this fall had a view to the same plan, but by 
the measures which were adopted they were defeated ; 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 231, 232, — Eds. 



324 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

that Major General Riedesel actually went up Lake 
Champaingn, altho he did not take the command ; that 
the enemy's force was about 2,200 men ; that they took 
with them a number 9 and 6 pound cannon ; that they 
have a number of small batteaux and canoes, which 
cannot be designed for the lakes, but for some of the 
rivers. How far the capture of Earl Cornwallis and his 
army may operate upon them to change their plan is 
uncertain ; they have been flattering themselves that 
the Earl would effect great things in the South. General 
Riedesel is to command at Montreal. I believe the bulk 
of the people on the Grants are as warmly attached to 
the American cause as any of the inhabitants of the 
thirteen States, but at the same time I believe there are 
some designing men among them. Your Excellency can 
best determine what use or whether any can be made of 
these hints. Cap* Edgar represents Lt. Colonel Stacy, 
several officers and a number of soldiers who are in 
captivity in Canada to be in a most wretched situation. 
I beg leave therefore to submit to your Excellency some 
measures being taken to effect their exchange and the 
exchange of Col Johnson, by which means the suspected 
plan may be developed. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 

P. S. The State of New York are impatient to have a 
settlement of the forage consumed in West Chester 
county by the allied army. I some time since wrote 
your Excellency that Congress had directed me to take 
measures to have the quantity ascertained, which obliged 
me to request your orders to the quarter masters to favor 
me with returns of the number of horses, cattle, &c, 
which were kept by the allied army while in said county. 
Your Excellency was pleased to inform me those officers 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 325 

should be directed to forward such returns; as I have not 
received them I request the officers may be desired to 
forward them, as soon as may be convenient. 

I have the honor to be, as before. 

W. Heath. 

Apprehending that Guilford and Branford pointed out 
by Governor Trumbull for the winter quarters of Col 
Sheldon's reg* were so near the Sound as would render 
their situation either exposed to surprise, or tend to pre- 
vent the horses geting properly recruited, upon a repre- 
sentation the Governor and Council have been pleased to 
order preparation to be made for them, at the Societys 
of Worthington, Kensington, New Britain, Westfield, 
and Middle ton, and in the towns of Farmington and 
Middleton, where I believe they will be well provided 
for. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Dec r 12 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 28 th ulto. 

I have desired General Stark to make a disposition of 
the two New Hampshire regiments to the differant 
posts at the northward and on the Mohawk River, and 
to see that each is seasonably and properly supplied with 
provisions. I ordered a quantity some time since to 
Albany for the purpose. 

I am happy to hear your Excellency has been con- 
versing with M r Morriss both on the subject of flour and 
money; officers and soldiers are confident of receiving 
every assistance which is in your power to obtain. 

The troops who hutted a new on this side of the river 
have nearly compleated their hutts, and those brigades 



326 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

that went into old hutts have repaired them. They 
are in great want of clothing, the whole of the materials 
expected from the eastward will I believe arrive in the 
course of this week. Our flour remains scanty, but we 
have the best supply of meat, both salt and fresh, that I 
have known for several years past, if at any time during 
the war. 

The troops from the southward have brought us the 
small pox, which I fear will spread. If we could obtain 
a few hospital stores, I think it would promote the service 
to have all such as have not had the distemper immedi- 
ately inoculated. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

P. S. There are here a subaltern and sixteen or 

eighteen men belonging to the Rhode Island reg\ 

Shall they be ordered on to join their reg* or remain 

here ? If clothing is to go on for the regiment, these men 

may serve for an escorte. 

W. H. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West-Point, December 16, 1781. 7 p. m. 

Sir, — To be prepared for every contingency which 
might happen on the river to interrupt our transportation, 
Colonel Putnam was out for several days to reconnoitre 
the country, on both sides of the river, for the most 
practicable routes to open roads to bring in our provisions 
and forage. He had not completed it when he was 
ordered on court-martial ; although he was for that im- 
portant object kept off duty in garrison. The distress 






1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 327 

we now suffer is owing to his not being able to complete 
his observations, — there being a supply of flour above 
the mountains, but neither the roads nor the river was 
practicable. 

This is one of the disorderly effects of detailing the 
officers of this garrison with the army ; nor is this the 
only instance of disorder from that practice. An officer 
who was on main guard for a week was detailed for other 
duty. I shall not enter into any further discussion on 
this subject till the Commander in Chief comes on, when 
I shall apply to him to have this and several other un- 
military practices determined in a more solemn manner 
than can now be obtained. For, Sir, give me leave to 
tell you, I know my own rights and those of the garri- 
son, not in speculation, but in as long and as attentive 
service as my superiors. In the mean time, Sir, that 
service may not be injured, and that the distressing and 
pressing calls of humanity may be relieved, I beg Colonel 
Putnam may be relieved and suffered to go on that 
service. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, 

Your most obedient and most humble servant. 

(Signed) Alex r M c Dougall. 

Major General Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Dec 18 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — I was honored with yours of the 
8 th the day before yesterday. I have directed returns 
to be made conformably, immediately ; those from the 
regiments here shall be forwarded without delay ; those 
from the two New Hampshire regiments at the north- 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 233. — Eds. 



328 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

ward and Colonel Sheldon's dragoons cannot be obtained 
untill some time hence. 

I was at loss whether your Excellency had called upon 
the New Jersey and New York Lines to make returns to 
you. I have therefore written to the commanding officers 
of those Lines that if they have not received your orders. 
to make out the returns and send them here as soon as 
possible. 

General Stark writes me that he is in a bad state of 
health and must visit his family. I had requested him to 
delay his journey a short time, in expectation that Gen- 
eral Hazen would arrive in this quarter, whom I intended 
to request to take the command of the northern district 
this winter. I am lately informed that your Excellency 
has thought proper to detain him at Philadelphia. I 
must therefore entrust the command at the northward 
to the senior officer of the New Hampshire Line, as it 
will not be possible for General Stark to remain during 
the winter, and there is no general officer who can be 
spared from this post. Perhaps your Excellency may 
not think the presence of general officer necessary in 
that quarter during the winter. ■ 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc seiV. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Dec 19 th , 1781. 

Dear Sir, — Yours of the 16 th is before me. The 
appointment of Colonel Putnam President of the General 
Court Martial was by the D. A. G., and I presume be- 
cause he found him next for that duty on the roster. 



1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 329 

If he was appointed out of his turn Col Putnam had a 
right to complain ; if he was on other important duty the 
orderly officer from West Point should have mentioned it 
to the D. A. G. that another officer might have been 
named ; the same should have been done with respect 
to the other officer. These are matters which should 
be adjusted at the orderly office; but I apprehend the 
difficulty lies some where else, viz*, in the troops on the 
west side of the river being called on general duties 
with those on the east side, or as it seems very frequently 
expressed of late the garrison, with the army. It is 
therefore necessary to make a few observations on this 
head, in order to shew that the distinction which sub- 
sisted while the army was in the field was in a con- 
siderable degree done away when the army moved into 
winter quarters, and the whole became a garrison to the 
posts in the Highlands, or as they are some times called 
the posts on Hudson's River, or more commonly West 
Point and its dependencies ; and for my own part I know 
of no exemption which one post has from general duties 
more than another. West Point is the capital post in the 
Highlands and has its dependencies, but it is itself one of 
the dependencies of' my command, and in every respect like 
other posts is subject to my orders, nor have I exercised 
any command over one post or another which by the 
custom of armies I should not have had a right to exer- 
cise, (exclusive of my instructions) had I moved from the 
field into the posts, and found you Governor of West 
Point, a commission which I have never yet heard you 
possess. There are certain rights or powers which are 
usually exercised by the commandants of posts, and there 
are those exercised by commanding officers of divisions 
or brigades in quarters assigned to posts, — such as the 
internal police and government of the place, but this is 
not to exempt them from general duties or general 
command; there can be but one head. Several would 



330 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1781. 

be a monster, the consequences confusion and dis- 
order. I do not doubt your knowledge of your own 
rights, and the rights of those under your immediate 
command or your long and attentive military service, 
but I must confess that some principals which seem to be 
hinted are to me entirly novel, both in practice and 
in speculation. You may be assured, Sir, that I never will 
knowingly infringe the rights of any officer or corps 
which I have the honor to command, — they are too dear 
to me ; but I too have rights which shall not, because 
they ought not, be infringed. You undoubtedly have a 
right to appeal or complain to the Commander in Chief 
of any unmilitary practises, and that in as solemn a 
manner as you think proper. 

The grounds on both sides of the river were very 
carefully reconnoitred the last year, and roads opened in 
the supposed best places to afford the short transportation 
to West Point when the river is obstructed, and yester- 
day I requested Colonel Pickering, the Q. M. G., to order 
the flour collecting at New Windsor by M r Stewart to be 
pushed down by the road on the west side, and that 
collecting by Major Wyckoff on the east side. I am con- 
fident the roads already made will admit, if they have 
been repaired, of more flour being brought down than we 
shall be able to obtain. But I have ordered Col Put- 
nam relieved from the court martial that he may pros- 
ecut his reconnoitring a better road, if to be found, and 
for some other business for which I may have occasion 
for his services. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

Major Gen 1 McDougall. 






1781.] WILLIAM HEATH. 331 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Dec r 30 th , 1781. 

Dear General, — With mine of the 22 nd I had the 
honor to forward the returns of the regiments in quarters 
here, as called for in yours of the 8 th . I have since 
received returns from the New Jersey regiments and 
Invalids — those from the New Hampshire Line, New 
York Line, and Sheldon's reg* are not yet come to hand ; 
as soon as I receive them they shall be forwarded. 

Some time the last winter your Excellency was pleased 
to order a board of officers to revise the former report of 
the board of officers on the rank of the captains of the 
Massachusetts Line, some of whom thought themselves 
injured. The board reported to your Excellency, but an 
approbation or disapprobation of the report was never 
expressed. Several of the captains remain very uneasy, 
and I believe there are very apparant grounds for some 
of them being so. They are frequently applying to me 
on the subject. I wish if your Excellency has no objec- 
tion to the report that it might be made known generally ; 
if there are objections to it in a general view, that where 
there are evident mistakes in the dates of some commis- 
sions to the injury of others that they may be corrected. It 
is said Cap 1 Hay ward of the 6 th reg* has a commission dated 
some months before it ought to have been, by which he 
takes rank of Cap* Tisdale of the 3 rd reg* and Cap* Smith 
of the 6 th ; both are older officers. I am informed Cap* 
Hayward does not dispute their right, but having the 
commission holds it. This, I believe, was rectified by the 



* Washington's answer to this letter and the letter of Jan. 1, 1782, is printed in 5 Mass 
Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p. 236. —Eds. 



332 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

board of officers in their report, but remains as before 
with the officers, and frequently excites uneasiness. 
I have the honor to be, with the highest [respect], 
Your Excellency's most obed* ser\ 

His Excellency General Washington. W. HeATH. 



th 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 1 st , 1782. 

Dear General, — I was honored with yours of the 24 
ulto. yesterday ; have this day called for returns of those 
who have not had the small pox, and directed that prep- 
arations be made for puting them under inoculation as 
soon as possible. 

I do not know whether the clothing for the Rhode 
Island reg fc is gone on or not ; the subaltern and party 
shall be instructed conformably to your directions. The 
D. A. Gen. informed me this morning that he had not 
received the form of a return from the A. Gen 1 , as men- 
tioned in your letter. Perhaps it may reach him this 
day. 

Lieut. Colonel Command r Reid is the eldest officer in 
the New Hampshire Line, and in case of Gen 1 Starke's 
absence, unless some other officer is sent to the north- 
ward, will command the troops. I have just received a 
letter from him, representing the absolute necessity he is 
under of going home some time this winter. If General 
Hazen cannot be spared to go to the northward, I believe 
it would not be disagreable to General Paterson, if your 
Excellency should approve it; during his absence from 
his own brigade it will be commanded by Colonel Putnam 
whose abilities are fully known to your Excellency. 

This day the new system of supplying the army here 
by contract commences. I hope it will answer the expec- 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 333 

tation of Congress. Particular instructions from the Sec- 
retary at War were expected, pointing out the mode of 
returns, orders, vouchers, & c ; none have arrived. I have 
been obliged from the necessity of the case to direct that 
the new system take place, but that the old mode of 
returns, orders, & c , continue untill the instructions arrive. 
The contractors are exerting every nerve to ensure an 
ample supply of provisions. The clothier general is 
issuing the clothing with all possible expedition, having 
begun with the blankets, vests, overalls, shirts, hose, shoes, 
&c, which will afford the first relief; and it never was 
more needed. Many of the troops are almost naked. 
The cloath for the coats, vest, and overalls is very good ; 
part of the blankets are also very good, but a large num- 
ber of them are so small that a man cannot cover himself 
in one of them. Three might make two good ones. At 
present it is impossible that they should keep the men 
warm. There is also a very considerable number of 
baize blankets. Your Excellency knows their quality. 
There is a great deficiency of shoes, and a great number 
of men now barefooted, but the greatest difficulty will be 
to get the cloathing made up. The regiments are nearly 
four hundred strong upon an average ; there are not, I 
believe, more than five or six taylors in a regiment, — in 
some not so many. The clothier general in his advertis- 
ment for taylors from the country offers twelve shillings 
Pensylvania currency for every suit which shall be made 
up, consisting of a coat, a woolen vest, breeches, and 
overalls. This I fear will be considered by the taylors as 
but small encouragement, but M r Moylan thinks is as 
much as he can venture to offer. If it was August any 
small delay would not be so material ; at this season every 
moment is precious. The troops are suffering inconceiv- 
ably, and unless a very considerable number of taylors 
are collected it will be spring before the cloathing is all 
made up. 



334 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

I am just informed that about fifty men belonging to 
the regiment of light troops late under the command of 
Colonel Scammel are left sick at Annapolis, principally 
with the small pox. They are under the command of 
Lieut. Jackson, of the 8 th Massachusetts reg*. He has 
written in the most pressing manner for assistance ; he 
had applied to the Council of the State for relief, but 
could not obtain it. Five or six of the men had died 
before he wrote. He represents that such as get well can 
not move untill cloathing is sent them. To send the 
clothing from here will be more expence than it will be 
worth when it gets there, and will take up a considerable 
length of time. Cannot some relief be sent them from 
Philadelphia, or be procured where they are at less ex- 
pense than if sent from here ? Some recruits have lately 
arrived from Massachusetts; a number more are collecting. 
I wish your Excellency the compliments of the season, and 
have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 8 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I was yesterday honored with yours 
of the 31 st ulto., to which strict attention shall be paid. 

The letter from the orderly office, with the form of a 
return, did not come to hand untill yesterday ; no time 
shall be lost in collecting the returns conformably thereto. 

The small pox spreads and is mortal. I have directed 
the inoculation of such as have not had the distemper to 
take place immediately, but it is delayd for the want 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. p 237. — Eds. 



1782.] WILLIAM IIEATH. 335 

both of medicine and stores. M r Sands has promised to 
have the latter ready by Thursday next, but the hospital 
are destitute of a sufficiency of the former. There is a 
large quantity of medicine in the hands of the clothier, 
part of which is to be left here, if it could be taken with- 
out breaking packages ; if not, the orders are most pointed 
that the whole be sent on together to Philadelphia. We 
shall have about 2,000 men to inoculate, and the pox 
is not of the best kind in the natural way, it is probable 
a considerable quantity of medicine will be wanted ; if it 
goes to Philadelphia, a proportion must be brought back 
immediately. In the interim many brave men may be 
lost for want of it. The orders are so possitive and the 
directors of the hospital being absent I do not chuse to 
break in upon the orders of the Board of War and order 
the packages broken, but I have taken the resolution to 
detain the whole, and to send off this representation by ex- 
press with orders to ride day and night. I request your 
Excellency will obtain such directions from the War 
Office or Congress as will afford the necessary relief. 
The enclosed letter to Doctor Cochran, which I have 
taken the liberty to put under your cover, will shew 
what articles are wanted. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. ser fc . 

W. Heath. 

His Ex°y Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 10 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — The regimental taylors are now 
busily employed in makeing up the clothing, but their 

* Washington's answer to this letter and the letter of January 14 is printed in 5 Mass. 
Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 237, 238. — Eds. 



336 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

numbers are by no means sufficient. Few if any have 
yet engaged from the country. The clothier has re- 
solved to offer more encouragement. The inoculation 
of the troops will deter those who have not had the 
small pox from coming to work in the respective quarters 
of the regiments. To remedy this I intend, if the country 
taylors should be induced to come in, to have some shops 
at Fishkill, Newburgh, or New Windsor, for those who 
have not had the small pox, where an officer shall super- 
intend each. It is apprehended that there are many 
taylors in the compas of twenty or thirty miles who will 
not leave their shops, but at the same time would take 
home cloath for a number of suits, make it up, bring in 
the cloaths, and take out another quantity. This is fre- 
quently practised at the eastward when large quantities 
of clothing is to be made up. I wish to know your 
Excellency's opinion whether it will be prudent and 
proper to employ any in this way. 

When orders came for isuing the cloathing, their 
was an exception to the music, as there was a proba- 
bility of an alteration. I wish to know whether the 
matter is determined respecting them, as many of them 
are very naked. 

Desertions from the enemy are very frequent, and 
those who come out say they will continue. Five light 
horsemen from Arnold's corps lately came out with their 
horses, & c , compleat. Two of them were deserters from 
our army. I ordered them confined in order for trial ; 
one of them has been tried and is sentenced to suffer 
death. I have not yet approved or disapproved the 
sentence. I am sensible that desertion to the enemy is 
one of the blackest of crimes, and ought to meet the 
most exemplary punishment, but in the present state 
of things when there are but very few desertions to the 
enemy, and a great part of those who have deserted and 
are in the service of the enemy are wishing to return, a 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 337 

doubt arises in my mind whether it be consistant with 
principals of policy to execute any of those who come 
out, as this will put a stop to it, when the infliction of 
corporal punishment may not. Even the publication of 
a sentence of death, altho the culprit should be pardoned, 
will have nearly the same effect as an execution on those 
who are with the enemy. I therefore wish your Excel- 
lency's opinion, on this head, whether it will be best to 
let the law have its due operation and punish those who 
come out according their deserts or otherwise. 
I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r y 14 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I have the honor to enclose the re- 
turns of the Massachusetts and Connecticut reg ts lately 
called for, except Sheldon's legionary corps and the 3 rd 
reg* of artillery ; there has not been time to expect the 
former, the latter is delayed by the river being impassable a 
day or two past. As soon as they come to hand they shall 
be forwarded with those of the New Hampshire Line, 
which cannot be expected this some days. On the 
night of the 10 th ins fc a number of vollunteer horse under 
the command of a Capt. Honnywell, covered by a de- 
tachment of regular troops from our lines, made an 
excursion to Morrissania, and surprised the enemy's 
picket at Delancy's bridge. Capt. Totten, who com- 
manded the picket, and one soldier with two militia 
men were made prisoners ; the rest of the picket escaped 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 237, 238. — Eds. 

90 



338 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

under cover of the night. Capt. Totten is considered as 
the most active officer in Delancy's corps and has been 
very troublesome on the lines. 

We are now in a good way with the cloathing, have 
found many more in the regiments than was expected 
who are capable of working tollerably well with the 
regimental taylors. The materials are good. There is a 
great want of buttons for the garments. There are men 
who could cast them in the regiments if they had pewter. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. ser*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, January 18 th , 1782. 

Sir, — Although I have a high personal regard for 
you, and take up the following with reluctance, duty to 
my country and superiors, the honor and rights of com- 
mand, the preservation of good order and discipline, the 
very existence of which seems at this time to be threat- 
ened, compel me to exhibit the following charges against 
you of conduct unmilitary and unbecoming an officer; 
particularly in the following instances. 

l 8t For ordering the distribution of a sloop load of 
boards sometime about the middle of December last, de- 
signed for the use of the department, to the troops at 
West Point only, when their arrival ought to have been 
reported to the commanding general, or deputy quarter- 
master of the department, that an equal distribution 
might have been ordered, and other troops who equally 
needed them, some of whom w 7 ere suffering with the 
small pox, might have received relief. 



1782] WILLIAM HEATH. 339 

2 dly For not reporting to the commanding general the 
escape of upwards of thirty prisoners from the provost at 
West Point on the night of the 4 th instant, that orders 
might have been sent to the out-posts to take measures 
to intercept them on their way to the enemy, and it be- 
ing an occurrence which ought to have been reported. 

3 dly For drawing orders on the clothing-store at New- 
burgh, which is the prerogative of the commanding gen- 
eral only, and which he signified to you in a letter of the 
26 th of September last. Such your orders, beside invad- 
ing the right of the commanding general, have involved 
some of the paymasters in embarrassments in their 
accounts. 

4 thly For writing a letter to the commanding general 
on the 16 th of December last, containing several expres- 
sions injurious to command and unbecoming an officer. 

gthiy p or di rec ting Colonel Crane, commandant of artil- 
lery in this department, to deliver arms and accoutre- 
ments on the 16 th instant, contrary to the general order 
of the 4 th instant, and threatening to send him to the 
provost in case of refusal. 

gtwy p or conversing before the field officers of the 
several corps stationed in the garrison of West Point, who 
were convened at your request on the 16 th instant, in a 
manner unbecoming an officer, tending to excite sedition, 
create divisions, subvert good order and discipline, and 
wound the service. 

7 thly For conversing before officers of different ranks, 
and particularly on the evening of the 7 th instant, in a 
manner unbecoming an officer, tending to lessen confi- 
dence in the commanding general, to limit command, 
bring orders into contempt, and destroy that due sub- 
ordination w r hich is the life of discipline, and the only 
barrier against confusion and disorder. 

On these several charges, I order you in arrest, and you 
will please to consider yourself in arrest accordingly, un- 



340 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

til you are brought to trial, or released by proper author- 
ity. Brigadier-General Paterson will take command of 
the garrison, and the original of which this is copy will 
be transmitted to the Commander in Chief. 
I am, with great regard, Sir, 

Your obedient servant. 

Major General MoDougall. W « HEATH, M. General. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN PATERSON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan r * 18, 1782. 

Dear Sir, — Major General M c Dougall being ordered 
in arrest, the command of the garrison of West Point de- 
volves on you. You will please to exercise the command 
accordingly. The posts at Yerplank's and Stoney Points 
are considered as dependencies of the command. You 
will please pay all possible attention to the garrison, forts, 
redoubts, magazines, & c , and see that every thing is kept 
in as perfect condition as possible, and the greatest vigi- 
lance observed by the guards and sentinels. Please ad- 
vise me frequently of the state of things. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

Brigadier General Paterson. W. HEATH. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan'y 18 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — Enclosed are several charges against i 
Major General M c Dougall on which I have this day or- 
dered him in arrest. I have taken this step with reluc- 

* Washington's answer to the letters of January 18 and January 19 is printed in 
5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 238-240.— Eds. 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 341 

tance and pain, but matters have become so circumstanced 
that nothing short of it could prevent scenes of confusion. 
I request your Excellency will be pleased to order a 
General Court Martial as soon as you may think proper. 
On the 4 th ins t thirty one or two prisoners made their es- 
cape from the new provost at West Point, part of them 
have been retaken. The officer who had the guard has 
been tried at court martial, sentenced and reprimanded 
in orders. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest regard, 
Your Excellency's most obed serv\ 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Jan ry 19 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — The enclosed information I had 
yesterday from Issaac Cotton, the person mentioned 
therein. He saies such was the conversation, in Septem- 
ber and October last, at M r . Mott's tavern where he 
quartered, and which was a principal rendezvous of the 
Pensylvania refugees. Whether those miscreants have 
given over their plan or not I cannot say, but have 
thought it my duty to communicate it to your Excel- 
lency. Cotton further informs me that since he has been 
confined in our provost, he has had conversation with one 
Ephraim Eayers, formerly of Brookfield in Massachusetts, 
but has since been in the service of the enemy, and taken 
prisoner and is now in provost. Eayers informed Cotton 
that he was of opinion that the enemy would early 
this spring cross the Lakes and that they would be joined 
by the Vermonteers, and others in the northern quarter. 
Eayers is an arch shrewd fellow, but whether he has any 
grounds for his opinion I cannot say. 



342 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

I have directed the clothier to employ all the country 
taylors which came in first to make up the clothing of 
the 10 th Massachusetts reg*, and as soon as it is done the 
men who have had the small pox shall march for Albany, 
and I will write to Colo. Tupper, who is now at home on 
furlough, to repair to Albany and take the command, un- 
less he should have gone to Boston to settle his accounts. 

The enclosed is coppy of the letter which I received 
the last evening from Boston. Major Lunt has received 
orders from the committee to distribute the clothing 
equally to the regiments of the Line of the Common- 
wealth ; why the Legislature did not comply with the 
late recommendation of Congress, and what their inten- 
tions are I know not. more than what is contained in the 
enclosed. I wish to know your Excellency's opinion 
on the matter. Major Lunt is not in his instructions 
directed to ask the opinion or advice of any person, but 
to issue the clothing. Whether for this year or the last, 
or how it is to be charged, is not mentioned. He has 
promised me he will not, however, issue any part of it 
untill I have an answer from your Excellency, which I 
request as soon as you may think convenient. An equal 
number of articles drawn from the store to such as may 
be received may be returned again, but how is regularity 
to be preserved in the ordinance and system ? 

Enclosed is also a letter from General Schuyler respect- 
ing a Capt. Duncan, who was tryed some time since and 
sentenced by a general court martial composed of militia 
officers appointed by Gen 1 Stark. I wish your opinion 
and direction on the proposal of Gen 1 Schuyler. I must 
confess for my own part I never place much confidence 
in such people, or wish to have to do with them. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 343 

P. S. I am this moment informed that Major John 
Porter of the 6 th Massachusetts reg fc is gone to France. I 
wish to be informed whether he had leave from your 
Excellency or Congress for so doing. 

W. H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb^ 8 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — On the evening of the 4 th I was 
honored with yours of 29 th and 31 st ultimo, with several 
packets for the eastward. The latter were forwarded the 
next morning by a trusty officer instructed conformably 
to your directions. The returns of the New Hampshire 
reg ts were not come to hand, altho I had written three or 
four times in the most pressing manner for them. It 
seems the first letter covering the forms reached Albany 
just as Gen 1 Stark was leaving the place, and whether 
he took them with him or what became of them is not 
known. A day or two before I was honored with your 
letters I sent off a special express with another form of 
the returns, and a pressing injunction to Colo. Reid to 
loose not a moment in compleating and forwarding them. 
I have received his answer that I shall have them with 
all possible dispatch. I have written General Lincoln 
respecting these returns as your Excellency was pleased 
to direct. 

The patients who have been under inoculation for the 
small pox in the 10 th Massachusetts reg* are recovering, 
as are those of the other reg*. The 10 th reg fc shall move 
to Albany as soon as the men are perfectly recovered 
and clothed. 

By a former resolution of Congress regimental pay- 

* Washington's answer to the letters of February 8 and February 13 is printed in 
5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 241, 242. —Eds. 



344 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

masters, adjutants, and quarter masters, inspectors, & c , 
were allowed an extra ration, or some of them rations 
equal to captains. Are they continued under the new 
system or not? a doubt arises with the contractors, and 
I have not the means of determining the matter. If the 
Secretary at War was present I should address him on 
the subject, and not trouble your Excellency. The 
officer commanding on the lines complains of a heavy 
burthen falling on him, and thinks some extra allowance 
should be made him on account of his situation. The 
officers commanding at King's Ferry, think their situation 
also requires some aid. Enclosed is a line from General 
Paterson, which I take the liberty to transmit, and re- 
quest your opinion and direction. 

Colonel Pickering being gone for Philadelphia, I WTOte 
him respecting the returns of cattle, & c , kept by the 
French army. The arbitrators who are appointed to 
settle the forage accounts are to meet in a few cteiys. If 
the returns from the French army are not obtained, one 
of the best means of ascertaining the quantity of forage 
will be lost to the public. 

By the former orders an officer previous to a discharge 
being granted was to produce a certificate from the pay- 
master of the regiment, the auditors, and the command- 
ing officer of the reg\ As the auditors have for some 
time ceased to act, what certificates are now to be consid- 
ered necessary previous to an officer's being discharged? 

One Charles Gillchrist, a soldier in the Massachusetts 
Line who deserted and was taken up after the expiration 
of your Excellency's pardon, and under the act of the State 
which in such case decrees a term of service beyond whaf 
was stipulated in the inlistment, was tryed the last year at 
a brigade court martial, and it appears sentenced to make 
up the deficient time of his three years engagement only ; 
then to be discharged. • The man now applies for his dis- 
charge, the time being compleated, which is the first of 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 345 

my hearing of it. I conceive that a brigade court could 
have no right of interferance in the case when the law 
of the State and your Excellency's proclamation had 
decreed otherwise, and that the man must be held, the 
sentence of the court notwithstanding, unless your Ex- 
cellency thinks proper to discharge him. I pray your 
directions in the case. 

The Rhode Island hutts were built the last year on a 
part of a farm which the owner wishes to improve this 
spring, and which he was prevented the last year by his 
land being laid common. As his fences w T ere destroyed 
and "all the adjacent timber collected for the hutts or 
burnt, the proprietor applys for leave to take down the 
hutts for the purpose of fencing the lands. Some of the 
hutts are in good order, but are not nor w r ill they be im- 
proved this winter ; shall the proprietor be permitted to 
take the hutts down or do with them as he thinks proper, 
after they are appraised, which may be necessary in part 
to ballance the bill of damages he may sooner or later 
exhibit for payment? 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. ser\ rt . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



William heath to george Washington. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb r y 13 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — A day or two since I was informed 
that a large number of arms, (said) seven or eight thou- 
sand stand, were brought from the eastward and lodged 
in stores on the bank of the river a,t Clavarack, and there 
left without guard or direction that I can hear of. Gen- 
eral Schuyler passing that way, apprehending they were 



346 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

in some danger from the character of the people of the 
vicinity on the other side of the river, obtained a militia 
guard untill a guard could be sent by Col Reid from 
Albany, which has been done. As soon as I was advised 
of the matter I directed Col Hughes to remove the arms 
to Fishkill immediately, as I think for several reasons it is 
both impolitic and unsafe to trust them at Clavarack. By 
whose order or why they were sent there I do not know, 
perhaps it was thought the best rout of transportation. 

The officers are growing very uneasy respecting their 
rations, the price of a ration by the contract is 9 J Pensyl- 
vania currency. M r Sands charges four pence half peny 
for the gill of rum, four pence half peny for the pound 
of beef, two pence for the bread ; this makes eleven 
pence without the small articles, so that the subaltern 
who is entitled to two rations cannot receive more than 
one and a half. I have written the financier on the sub- I 
ject by this post. The officers cannot conceive w T hy they 
should be charged more than M r Morriss gives, or they 
are to receive. I request your Excellency will please to 
give it such consideration as you may think it deserves. 
It certainly will be productive of great uneasiness if 
allowed to continue as at present. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

By the contract for the northern district the con- 
tractors are not obliged to keep any provisions on 
hand. From the situation of some of the posts and at 
particular season the difficult access to them whereby 
they will be put to extreme hazard unless some reserve 
of provisions are kept on hand, I have desired the 
contractors to provide accordingly. They are equally 
with me convinced of the necessity. I have mentioned 
it to M r Morriss ; hope he will approve of it, and that it 






1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 347 

will also meet your Excellency's approbation. It was a 
measure that I dare not omit, as it might occasion the 
loss of some of the posts. 

W. H. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



ADDITIONAL CHARGE AGAINST GENERAL McDOUGALL. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb r y 13 th , 1782. 

In addition to the several charges against Major Gen- 
eral M c Dougall of the 18 th of Jan ry last the following is 
now exhibited, viz 15 : 

For ordering two or more public buildings near Fish- 
kill landing to be pulled down in the months of Nov r 
and Decern 1 " last and the materials to be removed to West 
Point ; makeing additions, and erecting buildings at West 
Point without the knowledge or consent of the command- 
ing general, altho present at the post, when General 
M c Dougall's command at the post was of a temporary 
nature only, and such measures not warranted either by 
his instructions or military principals. 

W. Heath, M. General. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO LORD STIRLING. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb r y 21 st , 1782. 

My Lord, — Yesterday I was honored with yours p r 
Cap* Sill, containing some account of what took place 
when the members designed for the general court 
martial for the tryal of Major General M c Dougall con- 
vened at Fishkill. Conceiving it to be my duty to repre- 
sent the matter to his Excellency the Commander in 
Chief, I thought it most proper to transmit him your 



348 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

Lordship's letter, which I did, accompanyed by one from 
the d y judge advocate. What the result will be time 
must discover. I must confess I was much surprised to 
hear of the objections. 

I hope this will find your Lordship in good health, and 
every thing agreable around you. 

I have the honor to be, with great respect, my Lord, 
Your most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. A large quantity of arms, powder, & c , & € , is 
arrived at Fishkill and Fishkill Landing, a part of those 
stores are as soon as circumstances will admit to be 
deposited at We*st Point. In the interim, as the places 
where they are now stored are by no means proper or 
safe as magazines and occupied only from necessity, 
uncommon attention and precaution become necessary 
to prevent accidents or embezzlement. I therefore re- 
quest your Lordship will please to order such guards, 
and such instructions to be given as you may think 
sufficient. I apprehend the invalid reg* will be able to 
furnish the necessary guards ; if it is not, let them be 
ordered from the Connecticut Line. 

I have the honor to be, as before. 

W. Heath. 

Major General Lord Sterling. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb r y 23 rd , 1782. 

Dear General, — The time of service for which the 
levies under the command of General Waterbury are 
engaged expires the last of this month, and altho the 
Legislature of the State of Connecticut have ordered 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 246-248. — Eds. 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 349 

another detachment of militia to do duty on the lines at 
Stamford, I am apprehensive a very good work and con- 
venient hutts for the accommodation of troops which 
have been erected at that place may be in great danger of 
being destroyed. I have therefore sent a detachment of 
regular troops to that post for a few days untill the militia 
can be detached and arrive, when they are to return. 

We have fortunately removed all the arms and military 
stores from Clavarack to Fishkill and Fishkill Landing, 
from whence such as can be stored at West Point will be 
removed there, as soon as it can be effected. Enclosed 
is an invoice of the articles. Colonel Hughes has great 
credit for the dispatch with which he removed these 
stores from Clavarack to Fishkill. He informs me some 
articles were lost or plundered between Boston and 
Clavarack, that he has written back to the principal 
persons on the rout to make enquiry, and that the 
person who received the stores at Clavarack has noted on 
the receipts of those persons whose loads were deficient 
what was wanting. 

I take the liberty to enclose an arangment of the 
subalterns of the Massachusetts Line ; as great care and 
pains have been taken by the board I believe the arang- 
ment is as accurate as can be obtained. General Glover 
was the third person of the board, but was gone before 
the arrangment was coppied. He informed ma that he 
had concurred with the other officers in it. If it meets 
your Excellency's approbation, on your signifying it 
I will make it known. It has been long delayed and 
those concerned are anxious to know their rank. I ob- 
tained from Colo. Varick the revision of the rank of the 
captains of the Massachusetts Line which was lodged 
among your Excellency's papers. It appears that altho 
the arrangment was compleat when given in, it is now 
far otherwise, from the promotion of several captains to 
majoritys, the deaths and resignations of many others 



350 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

and promotions of some subalterns to captains. I have 
therefore requested the former board, viz*, general and 
field officers commanding regiments in the Massachusetts 
Line, to compleat the list, by puting the whole forward 
as they stood before, closing the intervals occasioned by 
the different causualties before mentioned, when the list 
shall be presented to your Excellency. 

The enclosed from Gen 1 Paterson was handed to me 
yesterday. I wish your Excellency's opinion, on the 
subject of it. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 

P. S. General Schuyler in his letter respecting the 
military stores and that he had obtained a militia guard 
and promised them pay untill one could be sent from 
Albany, concludes : " Should it not be in your power to 
reimburse the expence of the guard, which may amount 
to <£15 or £20, be pleased to advise me of it that I may 
apply to the Commander in Chief." As it is not in my 
power to reimburse the expence, I will inform him that 
I have presented the matter to your Excellency, and will 
wait your answer. 

I have the honor to be, as before. 

W. Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb'r 27 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I have been honored with yours of 
the 19 th . 

I did not receive a letter from the Superintendant of 
Finance by the last post respecting the price charged for 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 246-2-18. — Eds. 



1782.] PniLIP SCnUYLER. 351 

the ration issued to the officers. The enclosed observa- 
tions were handed to me a day or two since by Lord 
Sterling, from which your Excellency will see a state of 
the matter, and the uneasiness which consequently exists 
among the officers of all ranks. 

Nothing has been said with respect to artificers' rations 
or men on constant hard duty ; they have been hereto- 
fore allowed a ration and half p r day when so employed, 
indeed it is not possible for a man to work hard all day 
on the single ration. At present we have very few 
artificers except those which are taken from the regi- 
ments, and if men who are armourers, smiths, carpenters, 
or masons, wood cutters, boatmen, colliers, &°, are to 
labor hard all day and receive nither pay or extra 
allowance of provisions more than those who are idle in 
quarters, they will not work, at least to any great advan- 
tage. They alwaies have had a larger ration, and the 
propriety of it seems evident, but what the present inten- 
tion is I know not. I therefore request to be informed, 
whether the rations of artificers and men on constant 
hard fatigue are to be as heretofore or not, that I may 
direct accordingly. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



PHILIP SCHUYLER* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Poughkeepsie, March 10 th , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 26 ult. took a tour to 
Albany before it came to my hands. I feel your atten- 
tion with that pleasure which grateful minds only can 
experience, and sincerely thank you. Were I not so 

* For a notice of General Schuyler, see 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. ii. p. Gn.- Eds. 



352 • THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

much immersed in business I should do myself the honor 
of a visit. I may perhaps yet have that pleasure should 
the roads settle before the legislature rises. 

I have lately received a confidental letter advising me 
that it has been warmly debated in Britain whether the 
troops should be withdrawn or continue and act defensively 
only, that those for the former of these two increase and 
[in?] numbers. I wish it may be true, but the idea is too 
dangerous to be promulgated, as it may increase that 
listlessness which already too powerfully pervades our 
councils and our people. 

I am, dear Sir, with great esteem and regard, 

Your most obedient and humble servant. 

Ph: Schuyler. 

Honorable General Heath. 

Pardon me for writing on such very bad paper; neces- 
sity knows no law, and this is the last sheet I have in the 
house. 






WILLIAM HEATH TO RICHARD VARICK.* 

Head Quarters, Highlands, March 12 th , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — When the members appointed to compose 
a general court martial for the tryal of Major General 
M°Dougall lately met, General M c Dougall objected to the 
president and three of the members. A report of the 
matter was made to his Excellency General Washington. 
I was yesterday honored with a letter from him of the 
4 th instant in which he is pleased to observe as follows, — 

* Richard Varick was born in Hackensack, N. J., March 25, 1753, and died in Jersey 
City, July 30, 1831. He studied law and began to practise in New York; but on the 
breaking out of the war became a captain in McDougall's regiment. Afterward he was 
military secretary to General Schuyler, and aide-de-camp to General Arnold. After Arnold's 
treason he became recording secretary to Washington, in which office he continued until 
the close of the war. From 1783 to 1789 he was recorder of the city of New York, and from 
1791 to 1801 mayor. See Appleton's Cyclopaedia of American Biography, vol. vi. 
p. 250. — Eds. 



I 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 353 

"To determine on the objections which Major General 
M c Dougall has made to the president and three of the 
members of the court martial appointed for his trial 
recourse must be had to the precedent established on a 
similar occasion in the trial of General Arnold, in which 
the validity of challenges is ascertained. You will be 
pleased therefore to apply to my recording secretary, 
Col Varick, in whose possession I believe the original 
paper is for a copy of it, that the present dispute may 
be decided upon the principals there laid down. I inclose 
you a line to Col Varick for that purpose." 

No letter for you was enclosed under my cover. If 
you can find the paper, I will thank you for a coppy 
of that part of it which relates to the challenge of mem- 
bers, & c . 

I am with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed. ser*. 

W. Heath. 

Col Varick. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, March 13 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — By the last post I was honored with 
yours of the 28 th ultimo and two of the 4 th instant. 

The mode proposed for supplying the officers with 
cloathing is to some of them agreable, to others dis- 
agreable ; on which side the majority lays I am at loss 
to determine. Necessity will probably oblige many to 
accept the offer. They have for a long time been ex- 
pecting some releif of money ; they are as wretched for 
the want of it as can be conceived of. In a regiment 
perhaps not ten dollars can be mustered by all the officers 
belonging to it; many of them have been obliged to 
borrow money of inhabitants and run in debt to them for 

23 



354 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

necessaries upon promises of payment in a short time. I 
need not paint to your Excellency their feelings when 
they are dunned by the peasants for small sums, and at a 
loss what answer to give them. Many of them have 
families from whom they have been long absent, and 
whose circumstances require a part of their wages, and 
have probably for months been flattered with representa- 
tions of relief, have obtained monies from their neighbours 
upon the expectation of having it in their power soon to 
repay them. These several considerations taken together 
produce reflections in the mind of the officer, not friendly 
to his own comfort or the public service. They have 
been so often deceived with paper money and deprecia- 
tion notes, that any thing of the kind is scarcly listened 
to. They have generally proved opertunitysfor sharpers 
to feather their nests. From all that I see or can gather 
from the officers there never was a period when some 
money from some quarter was more necessary for the 
good of the service than at present. 

I have heard nothing from General Schuyler on the 
subject of one of your letters of the 4 th since he informed 
me that a scout had been sent out. I am rather appre- 
hensive that the season will be too far advanced to expect 
any advantage, but every attention shall be paid to the 
object, if it should appear probable of success. Colonel 
Tupper, who now commands at the northward, informs me 
that about twenty Indians have been down to the Little 
Falls on the Mohawk River, burnt one house, and taken 
one prisoner. 

I had some time since directed that the recruits should 
be drilled and instructed in the first rudiments of their 
duty with all possible attention, and the old soldiers, 
untill the ground got dry, exercised in companies in the 
manuel exercise, firings, & c , that when the weather will 
admit of their forming battalion they may be perfected in 
their manoeuvres. We yet continue to put under inocu- 






1782.] RICHARD VARICK. OOO 

lation such recruits as come on who have not had the 
small pox ; how long shall the practise be continued ? 

I have written to Col° Varick for the paper you are 
pleased to mention as the criterion to determine the va- 
lidity of challenges in the general court martial for the 
trial of Major General M c Dougall. Your Excellency men- 
tions that a line to Colo. Varick was enclosed. It was 
some how omitted ; none came under my cover. I am 
sorry that so many obsticles and delays happen in this 
business. I had flattered myself with the hopes of 
obtaining a short leave of absence before the campaign 
opened, to make a visit to the eastward. From a winter's 
very close confinement my health, as well as some private 
affairs, strongly urge it, and it is my wish whenever such 
indulgence can be obtained, it may be at a season eligible 
as it respects myself and the public service. 

I am, with the highest respect, 

Your Excellency's most obed. ser\ 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



RICHARD VARICK TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Poughkeepsie, March 14 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I am this day honored with your 
favor of the [blank] instant, and was, on the 12 th , with his 
Excellency's orders of the 28 th February on the same 
subject. 

In obedience to his orders and your requisition I send 
you the proceedings of the council of general officers in 
the case of General Arnold's challenges; but the result is 
by no means so full as his Exc y supposes, and there is no 
other paper in my hands to my knowledge more full on 
the subject. I have searched and researched the whole 



356 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782.. 

proceedings in that year, but find none. If, however, any 
thing on the subject should be found, I will transmit it 
without delay. 

I have this day received a letter from Lieut. Colonel 
Huntington of the 3 rd Conn., requiring me in consequence 
of general orders of the 18 th Jan y last to send down a mus- 
ter lad, whose name is David Gardner of that regiment, 
to join it on or before the 1 st April. 

In my answer to him I have engaged to comply with 
his request, provided I do not before that date receive 
your or his Excellency's direction or permission for some 
days longer, till 1 can hire or otherwise procure another, 
the means for which I can derive from the public only. 

I shall be happy if you will be so obliging as to direct 
1} Col Huntington to permit Gardner to remain till the 
Commander in Chief arrives, when I will send him to his 
regiment, or obtain a further indulgence, as the public 
finances shall put it in my power. In this expectation I 
shall retain Gardner, unless I receive your denial in the 
matter. 

With esteem, I am, dear Sir, 

Your obed fc serv*. 

Rich d Varick. 

M. Gen 1 Heath. 



! 



WILLIAM HEATH TO LORD STIRLING. 

Head Quarters, Highlaxds, March 17 th , 1782. 

My Lord, — I am this morning honored with yours of 
yesterday. I am exceedingly sorry that your Lordship 
missed of seing General Lincoln. He came here in the 
evening, and sit off for Philadelphia the next clay after 
dinner. He could not be prevailed on to make us a longer 
visit. I represented to him several matters which the 
officers of the army consider a grievance, to which he was 
pleased to assure me he would pay attention. 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 357 

I have always found your Lordship very just and pene- 
trating in your observations. You afford a new specimen 
of it when you are pleased to observe that you believe I 
shall wish to go eastward when his Excellency arrives. I 
do, indeed, my Lord, wish it most ardently. Eight months' 
absence renders a visit necessary on many accounts, and 
to look forward through another campaign without it is 
truly disagreable. I am happy that your Lordship is 
present, which will admit of my absence when the Com- 
mander in Chief arrives. I have often experienced your 
attention and goodness, and shall, my Lord, remember 
them with gratitude. General Washington may be soon 
expected ; he will leave Philadelphia soon after General 
Lincoln arrives there, which probably will be this clay. 
But, my Lord, there is yet that troublesome court martial 
in the way, which may detain me after General Washing- 
ton arrives. I am honored with a letter from the General 
in answer to mine, which contained a report of General 
M c Dougall's objections to several of the members of the 
court. His Excellency observes : " To determine on the 
objections which Major General M°Dougall has made to 
the president and three of the members of the court mar- 
tial appointed for his trial recourse must be had to the 
president established on a similar occasion in the trial of 
General Arnold, in which the validity of challenges is 
ascertained " ; and then directs that a copy of the paper 
be sent for from Poughkeepsie, which I have obtained, 
but it is not compleat. It appears that a council of gen- 
eral officers were convened June l sfc , 1779. Your Lord- 
ship was present, but before a determination of the 
question for which the council was called advice w r as 
received of the advance of the enemy up the North Eiver 
and to Kingsbridge, and the matter was postponed. 
Colonel Varick, the recording secretary, cannot yet find 
any other papers. 

I have not the least objection to your Lordship's mak- 



358 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

ing a visit to Rhynbeck, and pray you will please to pre- 
sent my compliments to Lady Stirling. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Lordship's most obed* serv fc . 

W. Heath. 

Major General Lord Stirling. 



LORD STIRLING TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Fish Kill, March 20 th , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — I was duly honord with your letter of 
the 17 th instant, and thank you for the kind indulgence 
you have given me of paying a vissit at Rhynbeck. The 
very disagreable weather and extrem badness of the roads 
have hitherto prevented my makeing use of it, but intend 
to set out to-morrow morning. I shall return about Mon- 
day. In my way I shall call on Col. Varick at Pough- 
keepsie, and endeavour to find the paper his Excellency 
General Washington alludes to. It must be a mistake 
that I was present at a council of general officers on the 
first of June, 1779, for I was then travelling on the road 
from Trentown, and some days afterwards joined his Ex- 
cellency in the Great Clove. I think the question on the 
validity of challenges must have been determind some 
time dureing the next autumn, but I believe I was not at 
the council, as I do not recollect ever to have heard that 
subject so largely handled as it must have been on such 
an occasion. 

The enclosed letter with others from the Marquiss 
Lafayette were sent to me about an hour ago from 
M r Lockwood's, A. D. P. M. G. 

I sincerely congratulate you on the appearances of 
public affairs in England ; even by M r Rivington's ac- 
counts of them they are much in our favour. I think 



1782] WILLIAM HEATH. 359 

it may be fairly concluded from the speeches of the two 
great ministers in the House of Commons that they mean 
to evacuate Carolina and Georgia, and to hold New York 
and their other posts on the continent for a good price in 
the hour of negociation ; and notwithstanding the high 
threats of Lord George that he will quit his post the mo- 
ment Parliment gives independence to America, he will 
be obliged sooner or later to submit to the measure, after 
179 members of that House have voted unconditionally 
for peace with America. I suspect that even the King 
is now for this measure, or the son-in-law of Lord Bute, 
Sir James Lowther, would never have proposed it. 

With sincere esteem and regard, I have the honor to be, 
Your most humble serv fc . 

Stirling. 

Gen 1 Heath. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, March 20 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I have obtained from Colonel Var- 
ick copy of a paper respecting challenges of members of 
courts martial, but it is not conclusive, and Colonel 
Varick informs me that after searching and reserching he 
cannot yet find any other. By the paper he has sent me 
it appears a council of general officers were convened at 
Middle Brook the 1 st of June, 1779, when your Excellency 
was present and stated to the council that General 
Arnold had made peremptory challenges to several mem- 
bers appointed on the court martial for his trial, and 
requested the opinion of the council thereon, that at the 
instant intelligence was received of the advance of the 
enemy to Kingsbridge and White Plains and a fleet up 
the river as far as Teller's Point, on which the matter 
was deffered without decision at that time, so that no 
light can be derived from the papers yet obtained. 



i 



360 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

On the night of the 14 th instant Lieu* Harris of Cap 6 
Vermille's company of militia having obtained intelligence 
that a party of Delancy's corps were out at a house near 
Mile Square, he had the address to surprise the whole 
party consisting of twelve, to kill one, take and bring off 
four prisoners. All accounts agree that the enemy are 
strengthning some of their works at New York, cuting a 
canal, & c . A deserter yesterday from Staten Island 
informs me the troops there are employed in makeing a 
number of fascines, of nine feet length, about ten inches 
thick, bound in eight places. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



JABEZ HATCH* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Boston, March 30, 1782. 

Dear Generall, — Your fav r of 13 tb inst a with the N. 
York paper came duly to hand. I sincerly thank you for 
the paper, as it gave us the latest newes. In a former 
letter I wrote you, I suppos d the G. C. would take up the 
matter of recruit g the army in the summer sessions. They 
have done it much earlyer than was expected, and have 
voted to raise fifteen hun d men. Those, or the most of 
them, I hope will be with you before the end of the cam- 
paine. The method to raise them is by classing ; this 
town's quoata is eighty four, am told the class money is 
paid into the hands of a committe who have procur d a 
number of the men, believe about half the above num r ; 
belive in the country the matter goes on very slowly, all 

* For Colonel Hatch's military record, see Mass. Soldiers and Sailors in the Revolution, 
vol. vii. pp. 490, 491. — Eds. , 



1782.] JABEZ IIATCII. 361 

ranks and conditions of men are complain^ of taxes and 
the scarcety of money, which I realy think is not without 
some foundation. I sometimes fear the State will not be 
able to raise the sums requir d by Congress ; should they 
fail and the financere not be enabled to fulfill his con- 
tracts the consequence would be alarming, but I hope 
we shall gett thr°. A day or two since a frigate from 
Brests, arriv d at New Port ; she saild with a large fleet, 
tis said nineteen sail of the line, and one hun d and forty 
sail of transports, bound to the East and West Indies. 
This frigate was bound to Virgina, but was chas d off the 
capes, and happily arriv d at the forement d port ; she bro fc 
a large sum of money for the French troops, and dis- 
patches for the French minister and Congress, which were 
sent off by express to-day. The Marquis Fayette and 
severall French officers embark d about the time she saild, 
bound to America. Thus, S r , I have given you all the 
newes in this quarter, but suppose you have later newes 
from Europe, as a ship is arriv d at Phil a in a short passage 
from France. This will be handed you by M r Prince, 
who has kept the Grammer School at Roxberry for some 
time past; he tells me he shall stop at y r quarters to 
deliver you a letter from M rs Heath. He goes to Phil a 
on bussiness and is to negotiate some for me ; will thank 
you to point out to him the best and safest rout from 
your qua rs to Phil\ If I can obtain the money, shall 
purchace a num r of teams for the army, and if you have 
any stores to come on shall be happy to forward them. 
I am, S r , with regard and esteem, your hum 1 s r . 

J. Hatch. 

Maj r Gen 1 Heath. 



362 



THE HEATH PAPERS. 



[1782. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO HUGH MAXWELL. 



Head Quarters, Highlands, March 31 st , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — Your favor of the 29 th inst. came to hand 
this morning. I wrote you on the 29 th which has prob- 
ably reached you before this time. I am anxious for the 
safety of every place within the limits of my command, 
and shall alwaies be attentive if possible to protect the 
inhabitants and counteract the designs of the enemy, but 
to be totally rid of them we must prepare for those grand 
manoeuvres by which alone under the smiles of Heaven 
we can expect to vanquish them from our country. With 
a view to this the troops must be collected and disciplined, 
for in a united body, not in detachments, is the great 
work to be effected. You will continue where you are 
untill the 14 th of April, unless you should receive other 
orders before that time, previous to which I hope a suffi- 
cient force will be furnished by the State of Connecticut 
for the safty of the post at Stamford. Knowing your 
attention, it is needless for me to inculcate vigilance. 
Please to collect me all the intelligence and papers in 
your power. We have no news of consequence. The 
Commander in Chief is expected this day. The officers 
are receiving their notes designed to enable them to 
furnish themselves with cloathing, &c. 

I am, with very great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed. ser\ 

W. Heath. 

Major Maxwell. 



1782.] ALEXANDER McDOUGALL. 363 



ALEXANDER McDOUGALL TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

West Point, April 1 st , 1782. 

Sir, — I have been extremely reluctant to trouble your 
Excellency while you were at Philadelphia least I might 
draw your attention from public objects of more moment 
than the case of an individual. The same consideration 
still influences me, till you are settled in your quarters; 
but as I am aprehensive Major General Heath may im- 
mediately aply for leave of absence from the army, I am 
constrain'd thus early to inform your Excellency that I 
have demanded of him a more particular specification 
of the charges of my arrest, in order that I might with 
propriety plead to them, or admit them and justify; but 
I have not been able to obtain this, however reasonable 
and just in itself, and I have a number of important 
charges to prefer against him which highly concern the 
army and the service. Whether it is proper in my 
present condition to exhibit these against him now must 
be left to the Commander in Chief. I shall take the 
liberty of transmitting them tomorrow, with my reasons 
for insisting on a more explicit specification of the charges. 
If this is not complied with before he leaves the army it 
will delay the trial; to many of them I cannot j)lead in 
their present form ; it would be an insult to my under- 
standing. As a freeman and an officer I therefore beg he 
may not have leave of absence till the charges are as par- 
ticular as they ought to be. 

Hearing that your Excellency had arrived today, I 
have taken the liberty of troubling you with this address ; 
and have the honor to be, with great truth, 

Your most ob* and most humble serv*. 

Alex r M c Dugall. 

(Copy) 
His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



364 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 



1 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, April ] s t, 1782. 

Dear General, — This will be presented by Colonel 
Putnam of the 5 th Massachusetts regiment, who will solicit 
your permission to be absent from the army for a short 
time. He was some time since appointed one of the arbi- 
trators to ascertain the quantity of forage consumed by 
the allied army in West Chester county the last campaign, 
which has detained him, and must again require his atten- 
tion on the 20 th of May next. As your Excellency's 
orders enjoyn all officers to be with their corps by the 10 th 
instant I dare not presume to grant leave of absence to 
any beyond that period, but as Colonel Putnam early 
mentioned to me the necessity of visiting his family and 
attending to some private business before the campaign 
opens, I am led to request your indulgence to him. As 
soon as I hear of your Excellency's arrival at Newburgh 
I shall repair there and have the honor of paying my 
respects. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. HEATn. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



ROBERT HOWE TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

West Point, April 13* h , 1782. 

Sir, — Gen 1 M c Dougall having objected to Col Greaton's 
sitting on his trial, tho' in terms respectfull to the 
Colonel, I had the room clear'd in order to take the 
opinion of the members upon the subject. Col Greaton 
then from a principle of delicacy requested to withdraw 



1782] WILLIAM IIEATH. 365 

from the trial, to which the members having assented, 
it becomes requisite that another officer should be warn'd 
in his room for some ensuing day, as it is now too late 
to be done within the hours prescrib'd for the sitting of 
courts martial in the Articles of War. 
With the greatest respect I am, Sir, 

Y r most obed* serv\ 

Robert Howe. 
N. B. No objections were made to any other member. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Highlands, April 18 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I am honored with yours of the 16 th 
covering coppy of a letter from Major General M c Dougall. 
Lest your Excellency might think I have been un- 
reasonable I beg leave to observe Necessity and Duty 
compelled me to arrest Major General M c Dougall and to 
exhibit charges against him. These I endeavoured to 
make as specific as is usually practiced in our army. 
When he demanded the charges being made more par- 
ticular I informed the D. Judge Advocate that if the 
charges were not as particular as was usually practiced in 
the martial courts they should be made so ; if they were, 
I declined making a precident, as it might open a door 
to unnecessary trouble hereafter in the army, but if when 
the court convened they thought a further specification 
necessary it should be made, as in such case the preci- 
dent would be theirs, and not mine. As Major General 
M c Dougall has a right, so have I no objection, to his mak- 
ing such representations to your Excellency respecting the 
execution of my command as he may think proper. I 
have only to lament that after a long winter's almost 
incessant application to a variety of business, some of 



366 THE HEATH TAPERS. [1782. 

which has been of an intricate nature, and in which 
I have needed the aid and assistance of every officer I 
have had the honor to command to render my task 
tollerable ; Reside the trouble and vexation which has 
attended m'e, my health has been impaired for the want 
of exercise and relaxation, and some private concerns 
peculiarly interesting to my family have loudly called 
for a moment's attention ; but I have not entertained an 
idea of absence untill the court on General M c Dougall 
was over, if it could be accomplished in a reasonable 
time. I have sacrificed much for my country. I am 
willing to sacrifice more, and it will be my misfortune if 
I am called to do it under any particular disadvantages, 
or with the loss of health. 

The arrangement of the captains of the Massachusetts 
Line has been made under your Excellency's authority 
and upon the principles prescribed by you to the former 
board. More than a year agoe you were pleased to 
order a board for the purpose. Their report, altho given 
in, had not been published on the 30 th of Decern 1 ' last. 
I represented to your Excellency the uneasiness of the 
captains, and requested the arrangement might be pub- 
lished if it had received your approbation. In your letter 
to me of the 8 th of January you were pleased to observe, 
that you had no papers of a late date with you, and 
pointed me to Col Varrick for the arrangrnent and 
further observed, " If it appears compleat and such an 
one as gives satisfaction, I have no objection to its 
being acted upon." Upon my receiving it I found it was 
incompleat, as several officers had been promoted, others 
had resigned, and some had died. This I represented to 
your Excellency in a letter of the 23 rd of Feb ry , and that 
I had desired the former board, viz*, general and field 
officers commanding reg ts in the Line of the State, to 
compleat the arrangrnent by puting the whole forward 
as they stood, closing the intervals occasioned by the 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 367 

different casualties, and being so compleated it has been 
presented to your Excellency. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. serv fc . 

W. Heatit. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO THOMAS EDWARDS. 

Highlands, April 24 th , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — I was informed the last evening that the 
general court martial had determined Colonel Crane 
should not give evidence before the court on the 5 th and 
6 th charges exhibited against Major General M c Dongall. 
As Colonel Crane's evidence is the most material of any 
which can be produced in behalf of the United States in 
support of those charges, duty constrains me to call on 
you to move the court this morning to admit his evidence 
as most essentially necessary, and if it is not admitted, 
that you enter a formal protest, that it may appear on 
the proceedings. 

I am, with great regard, dear Sir, 

Your obed. serv fc . 

W. Heath, M. General. 

Thomas Edwards, Esq r , D. Judge Advocate. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Highlands, April 5 th , 1782.* 

Dear General, — I forward two sailors who lately 
made their escape from the British man of war Adamant, 
and enclose a New York paper of the 19 th , the latest I 
have received. 

* This date is obviously incorrect, and without doubt the indorsement is right. — Eds. 



368 THE HEATH PAPEES. [1782. 

When I was honored by your Excellency the winter 
before last with a command similar to that you have 
been pleased now to assign me, your pleasure was 
signified that I should approve or disapprove the sen- 
tences of courts martial, except when the sentences were 
capital or of a particular nature, which were to be trans- 
mitted to you. Apprehending your sentiments are still 
the same, I have been pursuing the same mode of con- 
duct. I now take the liberty to enclose the proceedings 
of a general court martial handed to me the last evening, 
altho the sentence is not a discharge from service, yet 
from its nature I have thought it most eligible to lay it 
before your Excellency for your determination. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. serv 1 . 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 

Indorsed: To Gen 1 Washington transmitting the proceedings of a court martial on 
Lieut. Muzzy of the 2 Massa. regiment for determination, and two sailors deserters from 
the Adamant at New York, April 25, 1782. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Highlands, April 26 th , 17S2. 

Dear General, — In obedience to your orders of the 
22 ud I wrote the contractors on the subject of the salted 
and damaged provisions, and yesterday received an 
answer from them which I take the liberty to enclose. 
I wish to know your pleasure whether Mess rs Sands shall 
take such of the provisions as are not fit to issue and I 
credit the United States what they may be thought 
worth or dispose of them and account to the public, or 
whether they shall be sold at vendue by the quarter 
master general, the late commissary (altho I believe the 
commissary is absent), or any other person. 

I take the liberty to enclose a letter from Lt, Col 



1782] WILLIAM HEATH. 3G9 

Badlam, received p r the last post. I am still apprehen- 
sive that altho Major General Lincoln had fixed Lt. 
Colonel Badlam at Boston, officers have not been 
appointed to muster the recruits at the other three 
places mentioned as rendezvous in the resolve of the 
General Assembly. As Lt. Colonel Badlam makes no 
mention of any officers being retained by order of 
General Lincoln but Ensign Robinson, and he for a 
limited time only, before I received Lt. Col Badlam's 
letter I had written him on the subject. His answer will 
determine the matter. 

If Lt. Colonel Badlam has not written your Excellency 
respecting Ensign Robinson's being permitted to con- 
tinue with him longer, I request a signification of your 
pleasure on that particular. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obedient serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Highlands of New York, May 3 rd , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — I was in hopes long ere this time to have 
paid my respects personally to you in Boston, but have 
been disapointed. When I shall have that honor is un- 
certain. Impressed with the warmest sentiments of 
friendship which nither time or distance can abate, I 
cannot omit so favorable an oppertunity as offers by 
Doc r Whitwell to express their lively continuance in my 
breast and my ardent wishes for the honor, health, and 
happiness of yourself and family. I most heartily con- 
gratulate you on the surrender of the whole island of 
Minorca to the Spanish arms. This fortunate event will 
tend to lower the pride of Britain and in its consequences 

24 



370 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

prove advantageous to our cause. Affairs also wear a 
pleasing aspect in the West Indies. The enemy are in 
the most painfull anxiety for the fate of their islands. 
In New York they are encreasing and strengthening 
their works with great assiduity and are very apprehen- 
sive of being arrested in their strongholds the approach- 
ing campaign. Whether they will evacuate Charlestown 
or not is yet uncertain. I am sorry to find the enemy 
too successful against our trade. Numbers of prises are 
almost daily sent into New York. 

I hope in a short time to congratulate you on your 
re-election to the first seat of government, in which, be 
assured, none will more heartily participate. 

Please present my most respectfull compliments to 
your amiable lady, your little son, whom Heaven pre- 
serve, your brother, &c. 

I have the honour to be, with the greatest respect & 
esteem, dear Sir, 

Your obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Since writing the above I have received a New 
York paper of the 30 th ultimo, which gives an account 
that the Duke of Cumberland packet, Cap* Dashwood, 
arrived at New York last Sunday in six weeks from Fal- 
mouth in England, with the March mail. The paper 
contains some most interesting debates in the two Houses 
of the British Parliament ; in the House of Lords on the 
7 th of Feb ry , and in the House of Commons on the 27 th of 
the same month. A motion was made in the latter by 
General Conway for leave to bring in a bill to enable the 
King to make peace with America. The ministry en- 
deavoured to git rid of the motion by an adjournment, 
but on a division the ayes were 215, noes 234, a majority 
of 19. The House immediately, altho half after one, 
resumed the debate. The ministry finding so great a 
majority gave up the main question without a division, 



1782] WILLIAM HEATH. 371 

and the House adjourned at two. The 28 th the Attorney 
General said he should move for leave to brin^ in the 
bill, & c . The whole complection of the debates look very 
favorable. However, as distrust is the mother of security 
every exertion should be continued untill a safe and hon- 
orable peace is ratified. Then with the highest pleasure 
and satisfaction will we quit the field to partake with our 
friends the balmy sweets of domestick life, for which none 
more ardently wishes than 

Yours, as before, W. Heath. 

I would send you the paper, but must transmit it to 
Head Quarters. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Highlands, May 6 th , 1782. 

In answer to the several questions stated by his Excel- 
lency the Commander in Chief to the General Officers 
April 15 th , Major General Heath begs leave to answer for 
himself as follows : 

To Question 1 st . Supposing the enemy's force at N. 
York to be as above, that they retain possession of the 
harbour, and that they have a naval superiority upon the 
coast. 

Answer. There can be no probability of success in an 
attempt on New York. 

Question 2 nd . Supposing the same force, that they keep 
possession of the harbour, but loose their superiority at 
( sea. 

Answer. Success very improbable, if possible, except 
with a very great force, and then attended with much loss. 

* Washington's questions to which this letter is an answer are printed in 5 Mass. Hist. 
Coll., vol. iv. pp. 249-252. — Eds. 



372 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

Question 3 rd . That they shall have the same force in 
the city, but shall loose the command of the water, both 
in the harbour and at sea. 

Answer. In this case their is a probability of success 
with a suitable force, properly supplied, & c . Against the 
enemies' present force 25,000 good disciplined troops, not 
on paper, but actually effective in the field, will be 
necessary to opperate to advantage and afford a moral 
certainty of success. 

If the enemy's whole force is collected from Charles- I 
town, Savannah, & c , to N. York an army of 33,000 effec- 
tive men will be necessary to reduce a garrison so | 
numerous as the garrison of New York will in such j 
case be. The country have such a force, but it is diffi- 
cult in the present embarrassed state of affairs to deter- 
mine whether they will draw it out in such men as will 
be absolutely necessary for the purpose. Indeed, I think 
the probability is against it, unless our generous ally 
should afford us a very considerable land as well as 
naval force, or in some other wav lend an aid which will 
more effectually call out the country and command the 
necessary supplies than it is in the power of the States 
now to do. Not more than three fourths of the militia 
commonly called for arrive in camp, and many of those 
who do are old men and boys, so that little more than 
half the number called for can be depended upon to form 
an army of such men as will be absolutely necessary, and 
I think it would not be safe to depend on a less estimate. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. servant. 

W. Heath, M. General. 

His Excellency General Washington. 









1782.] WILLIAM IIEATII. 37 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Highlands, May 7 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — Enclosed are two newspapers which 
came to hand the last evening. They are the latest I 
have received. 

The day before yesterday about eighty recruits arrived 
from Massachusetts, in general very indifferant; a number 
of them negroes, some old men & boys. Among them 
are also two Frenchmen who confess they were marines 
on board and deserted from a French frigate in Boston 
harbour. How Colonel Badlam could muster and forward 
them I am at a loss to determine. What shall be done 
with these Frenchmen ? 

The boatmen and others on constant hard duty com- 
plain that they are reduced to a single ration, which is 
insufficient to support them on hard duty. Ought they 
not to receive a ration and half as usual ? 

Some mutinous intentions have lately been discovered 
in the Connecticut Line. Three of the supposed princi- 
pals are confined in the provost at West Point. They 
will be brought before a general court martial this day ; 
two of them, I am informed, are Serjeants. 

A very great uneasiness continues among the regi- 
mental officers respecting the mode of receiving their 
provisions. The commissaries will not issue to the field 
officers except they draw regimentally, as appears by the 
enclosed from one of them. Similar notes were sent to 
other field officers. If the officers draw with the men, 
and the whole of the provisions for a regiment are weighed 
at one draught, the provisions will not hold out, a suspi- 
cion will arise that the officers not only pick out the best 
peices but receive their full weight, while the deficiency 

* Washington's answer is printed. in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 256, 257. — Eds. 



374 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

falls on the men. Ought not the provisions according 
to the usual custom of armies be weighed in as many 
draughts as there are companies, and will not the service 
be promoted as well as the field officers gratified in draw- 
ing their own provisions and their servants without arms 
by themselves ? 

I am informed that the contractors require from each 
regiment a return specifying the number of men present, 
and also of those absent ; bv this means the clerks in the 
commissaries' store will have the most accurate knowl- 
edge of the whole strength of the army present, on com- 
mand, sick, & c , which I think ought to be known by the 
Commander in Chief only. Too much care cannot be 
taken to prevent impositions in the provision returns, 
but is it not too dangerous for a clerk in a store to 
be possessed of accurate returns of the strength of the 
army ? I beg leave to submit it to your Excellency's 
consideration. 

Doc r Townshend informed me yesterday that he had 
received a signification of your pleasure through Doc r 
Craik to put a stop to inoculation. I have mentioned it 
in the orders of this day. I am apprehensive that there 
may be infection in some of the quarters ; have directed 
when it is probable, that the men who have not had the 
small pox be put in tents as near their respective corps 
as may be safe. If your Excellency does not approve of 
this mode, such other shall be adopted as you may think 
proper. 

I have the honor to be, w T ith the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. serv*. 

W. Heath. 

P. S. Col Swift has this moment called at my quarters 
and shewn me your letter to him of yesterday respecting 
the mutineers, & c . A soldier belonging to one of the 
Connecticut regiments some time since transferred to the 



1782.] WILLIAM IIEATri. 375 

corps of invalids being recovered, Colonel Swift wishes he 
may be returned to the regiment to which he formerly 
belonged. Is it admissible? 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATPI TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Highlands, May 10th, 1782. 

Deak General, — I was the last evening honored 
with yours of the 8 th . 

As your Excellency by your letters of January last 
committed the care and direction of the recruiting service 
in the Eastern States to General Lincoln, Huntington, 
Col Olney, & c , I have never had any official knowledge 
of the regulations which have been established or what 
methods have been pursued, nor have I ever written to 
the authorities of the respective States on that subject or 
received a line from either of them, supposing that those 
who were particularly interested with the business would 
take such measures as the importance of the object re- 
quired. From transient reports which I have heard I 
have felt an anxiety that matters were not in that 
regular way I could wish, which I took the liberty to 
hint to your Excellency, and enclosed some letters I 
had received from Cap* Banister. 

In yours of the 18 th of April with which I was honored 
your Excellency seemd to be of opinion that General 
Lincoln had not made omission in any part of so impor- 
tant a service, but advised me to write to Col Badiam 
on the subject. I accordingly wrote on the 22 nd of the 
same month. I expected to have heard from him by 
the last post, but did not. I wrote him again this week 
respecting the party of recruits which he had sent on, 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 258, 259. — Eds. 



376 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

that such stuff, for I could riot call them neither men or 
soldiers, could be of no benefit to the service. 

As Lt. Colonel Badlam was fixed at Boston and in- 
structed by General Lincoln who was authorized by your 
Excellency for that purpose, I doubt the propriety of my 
calling him away. If you should think proper to order 
him on another field officer could be sent, and I think 
the service will be promoted by sending one to Spring- 
field. Cap fc Banister continues there at present, and 
I believe transacts the business with fidelity, but the 
committee men and others who hire the men are so im- 
portunate with the superintendants to get such passed 
as they present that very great resolution and decision 
are necessary to stem impositions. I think it will be 
necessary also from the tenor of the resolution of the 
Commonwealth to have an officer (a cap*) at Worcester 
and another at Wells, and that five or six subalterns 
should be immediately sent from the army to march 
on the recruits. This I beg leave to submit to your 
Excellency's consideration. 

I am sorry to hear that the difficulties complained of 
in the issues of provisions are in the contract. The un- 
easiness of the army is very great, and cannot fail to 
prove injurious to the service. Enclosed is a letter 
which I received yesterday from Lt. Col Fernald, in 
which he requests me to represent the matter to your 
Excellency. 

I think the contractors' weighing the provisions to 
regiments in one or as few draughts as possible is really 
injurious. It is not practisd in any service. This mode 
was adopted by them early in the winter, but by a per- 
emptory order I obliged them to weigh in as many 
draughts as there were companies. Colonel Swift in- 
formed me yesterday that the Connecticut Line meet 
with great difficulty in obtaining their provisions. Some- 
times they draw at West Point and sometimes at the 



1782,] WILLIAM IIEATII. 377 

landing below their cantonment, nor do they know cer- 
tainly where they are to draw untill they send to see. 
This uncertainty occasions delay, inconvenience, and 
irregularity. 

Another detachment of recruits called here this morn- 
ing on their way to Philadelphia for the Rhode Island 
reg*. The whole of those I have seen for that reg fc are 
as fine fellows as ever I saw, neither old countrymen, 
negroes, old men or boys among them. 

I know not what can be done with the two French 
deserters unless they are sent on to Philadelphia by some 
party going on, if it should meet your approbation. 

I have the honor to be, with the highest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed. serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Gen 1 Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON* 

Highlands, June 19 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — Cap 1 Williams, Brigade Major of 
the 2 nd Massachusetts brigade, has been tried at a general 
court martial for not furnishing a detail laid on the 
brigade by the D. A. G., has been acquitted by the court, 
and the judgment approved by your Excellency. This 
has been done in consequence of Colonel Putnam, com- 
^mandant of the brigade forbiding Cap* Williams furnishing 
the detail. Colonel Putnam consequently stands answer- 
able for countermanding the order. I am informed he 
will attempt [to] justify his conduct on a pretence that 
it was not known how far my command extended, and 
that I had not a right to order the detail. From your 
Excellency's order of the 4 th of April I apprehended 
a doubt could not exist. The order of the 9 th instant 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 266, 267. — Eds. 



378 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782, 

is expressed in a manner which seems to imply a doubt. 
It is certainly wounding discipline to have an order 
openly oppugnated* with impunity; on the other hand 
it will be a loss of time and much trouble to arrest 
and try if there is not a basis to support the trial, and 
it should finally be supposed that my command was not 
made sufficiently explicit. I am well aware of the deli- 
cacy of the case and an opinion being given thereon. I 
therefore only request your Excellency's opinion whether 
from the several circumstances it be advisable to have 
the matter prosecuted or dropt. I have no doubt in 
my own mind ; but from the expression of the order 
of the 9 th instant if there is no doubt as to my com- 
mand the matter is clear; if there is, my situation has 
been unfortunate, for if I could not issue the disputed 
order, I do not see that I could issue any orders with 
propriety. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, your 
Excellency's most obed. serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



JOHN GREATOX* TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Dobbs Ferry, June 21 st , 1782. 

Dear Gen l , — I received yours of the 17 th instant, am 
much oblig'd to you for the care & attention you have 
taken on the subject of my promotion. I acknowledge 
myself under renewed obligations. I am exceeding 
happy that his Excellency is easey without another officer 
being sent to relieve Col 1 Hull. I think that two field 

* John Greaton was born in Roxbury, March 10, 1741, and before the war was a trader. 
In 1775 he was major and lieutenant-colonel in Heath's regiment, and in the same year was 
made colonel of the 24th regiment. He served throughout the war, and in January, 1783, 
he w^as commissioned a brigadier-general. In October he returned home on account of 
sickness, and on the 16th of the following December died at Roxbury. See Bugbee's 
Memorials of the Mass. Society of the Cincinnati, pp. 223, 224. — Eds. 



1782] WILLIAM IIEATII. 370 

officers is little enough at this post, one to attend the 
dessipline of the troops, the other to flaggs, &c. The 
duty hear is considerable hard. I have but about one 
hundred men present fit for duty (a grand command 
indeed). If I had my proper command this place would 
be very agreeable. I sent Cap* Tisdale the day before 
yesterday on a scout. I ordered him down as far as 
Fort Lee. He will return this evening, am in hopes he 
will bring me some news. I have not been able to get 
any since my arrival at this place. 

I had the pleasure of seeing M r Loring the day before 
yesterday ; he came up with a flagg respecting the 
exchange of prisoners L* Hold ridge brought down. He 
could not look me in the face ; M r Skinner & all the 
officers that were present took notice of it. He ask'd 
after you, his Uncle Felton & family, & a number of 
others. He said, he wished the war could be settled 
between [Great] Britain & America, & that we could live 
on[ce] more in peace together again. Inclos'd you have 
a paper of the 17 th , the only one I have been able to get 
since my arrival hear. Any intelligence that I shall get 
will transmit to you as soon as possible. I should be 
happy to hear from you every oppertunity. 
I am, dear General, yours sincerely. 

J. Greaton. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO BENJAMIN LINCOLN. 

Highlands, July 24 th , 1782. 

Dear Sir, — In my other letter I mention that deser- 
tions are too frequent in our army. I assure you it is 
become a serious affair. They are every day encreasing. 
I have this moment a report of a very steady serjeant, 
corporal, and three men going off from the 5 th Massa- 
chusetts regiment. Desertions are as frequent in the 
Connecticut Line ; ten or a dozen have gone from that 



380 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

Line within these few days past. Those who desert are 
almost entirely of the old soldiers who are for the war, 
and unless some means are speedily devised to relieve 
them I fear the desertion will encrease among that class. 
The recruits are daily coming up with their two or three 
hundred dollars p r man, and to serve only three years. 
These lads who have endured everv thino; from the 
beginning look upon themselves as chained down for 
life. Their past wages they have received in deprecia- 
tion notes ; these they sell to sharpers for five and six 
shillings upon the pound, and pay that for the articles 
they buy [at ?] the enhansed prises of the day, conse- 
quently realize but a trifle. They receive no pay. Many 
of them have wives and children at home. The State, I 
am told, have discontinued the resolution for supplying 
the soldiers' families. All these considerations strike the 
minds of the soldiers powerfully, and almost drive them 
to dispair. Their services being secured, they reason 
that the public think but little about them, while they 
are lavishing their wealth on recruits for short periods 
of service. They will not desert to the enemy, but to 
their homes, to Vermont, & c . You, my dear Sir, know 
the worth of these veterans. They are certainly without 
exception some of the best soldiers in the world. I 
request you to give their situation and condition a few 
moments' consideration in your just scale of thinking and 
endeavours to obtain them some relief of pay, if possible, 
which would tend to alleviate their present distresses, or, 
I assure you, I dread the consequences which I am con- 
vinced will be the encrease of desertions among? the old 
soldiers. Writing to you in confidence I write freely. 
You will read my letters when more important business 
does not call for your attention. 

I have the honor to be, very respectfully, 

Your affectionate, humble serv fc . 

Gen* Lincoln. W « HeATH « 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 381 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON". 

Highlands, July 28 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — I was honored with yours of the 
11 th , and have endeavoured to discharge the trust re- 
posed in me. Enclosed your Excellency will find the 
proceedings of a general court martial on L* Colonel 
Badlam of the 8 th Massachusetts ieg\ and L* Lamont 
of the invalid reg\ Many other sentences I have 
passed upon ; these extending to dismission from the 
service I have thought it my duty to lay before your 
Excellency. 

A number of officers have been long detained on the 
general court martial for the trial of Major General 
iPDougall, and some who had urgent calls to make short 
visits to their families have been prevented. General 
Paterson has applied for leave of absence for ten or 
twelve days ; L* Colonel Smith, who early and repeatedly 
expressed the necessity of his going home, has also been 
disappointed. He wishes for four or five weeks' absence 
if consistent with the service. I beg leave to submit 
their applications to your Excellency's consideration. 
Nothing very remarkable has taken place during your 
absence. Desertions of soldiers engaged for the war 
continue, or have rather encreased. A steady old Ser- 
jeant, corporal, and three men have gone off from the 5 th 
Massachusetts reg*. Some of them have families ; it is 
thought they have gone to them, and that the service 
would be promoted by sending an officer after these and 
others. I have thought it might be attended with good 
consequences, for unless something is done to bring the 
deserters back, others will be prompted to follow them. 
There are officers who would go, but decline doing it un- 
less their expenses are borne. This I have no authority 






382 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

to promise, have therefore delayed the matter until your 
return. 

It has been found that the light infantry in the course 
of their duty on the lines and laying out greatly injure 
their heavy cloathing. I therefore requested M r Brooks, 
the Assistant Clothier, to issue frocks to the five compa- 
nies which last marched to the lines. I ask your Excel- 
lency's candour for giving this order which was from the 
necessity of the case, and I will hope will meet your ap- 
probation. The service would be greatly promoted if all 
the troops could now receive their summer cloathing ; if 
there is not a sufficiency for the whole, as the light in- 
fantry are most exposed to long and dusty marches their 
being supplied will be equal, as it respects all the corps, 
and comfortable and convenient to the men. Some 
small parties of very good recruits have arrived from 
Massachusetts. There have been several desertions from 
the enemy. 

The contractors for West Point and its dependencies 
have applied for a survey of the provisions designed for 
the reserves agreeable to the tenor of the contract, the 
United States being to guarantee them during the months 
of July, August, and September, if they are in good con- 
dition. I have appointed a survey for the purpose with 
instructions. Their report, when handed in, shall be laid 
before your Excellency. 

Several tents in the 2 nd Massachusetts reg fc lately took 
fire by accident, by which several articles of cloathing, 
some arms and accoutrements, were lost. The command- 
ing officer has applied to have the cloathing replaced. 
As your return was hourly expected, I have waved giving 
an order for this extra allowance of cloathing until you 
arrived. 

Major General Knox has thought it necessary to send 
two brass field pieces to the northward to replace the 
two now there which are out of repair, together with 



1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 383 

some ammunition, &c. I have approved the measure. 
A better state of affairs in that quarter your Excellency 
will probably have than is in my power to communicate. 
The troops at West Point are at present much pinched 
for provisions ; the contractors plead the embarrassments 
they labor under in not being supplied with money. 
I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect, 
Your Excellency's most obed* serv*. 

W. HEATn. 

P. S. The proceedings of the court martial on Cap 1 L* 
Freeman being just handed to me I have enclosed them. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Highlands of New York, Aug 3t 14 th , 1782. 

Sir, — Before this reaches your Excellency you will 
probably have heard of the prospect of an approaching ac- 
commodation among the belligerent powers, and from the 
newspapers or handbills have seen how far matters had 
advanced when the last intelligence was received from 
Europe. The terms which are hinted, if acceded to, are 
not, I think, disadvantageous to America, and if peace is 
now obtained, America will secure her liberties and in- 
dependence by a shorter contest than any nation who 
struggled for them before her. The refugees in New 
York are in fits of dispair; they are rending the facings 
from their uniforms, plucking out their cockades, and ut- 
tering execrations. Sir Guy Carleton is striving to calm 
them, and persuading them to suspend their opinion for 
the present, and to continue stedfast in their loyalty. I 
think their fate may be pretty easily developed. They 
have merited it. When I reflect on the present prospects, 
and glance my ideas to what will probably be the future 



384 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1782. 

greatness of this rising empire (the wonder of the world) 
I am lost in a transport of joy. Such, I think, you feel 
in your own breast, altho you and I can only view them 
in idea, and feel the high satisfaction that we had a hand 
in laying the foundation of the structure under many 
fatigues and dangers, and that posterity will enjoy its 
splendor ; but I call back my pen from this pleasing di- 
gression of prospects to our present state. The enemy 
are yet in our country ; they must be withdrawn or van- 
quished ; there should be no relaxation on our part untill 
the one or the other takes place and a peace is fully rati- 
fied. The surest way to treat with the enemy is sword 
in hand, and the best way to keep him in his senses is to 
continue to apply to him those means which brought him 
to them. 

I hope you enjoy your health. I wish for the time 
when I shall have the pleasure of takeing you by the 
hand and paying you my respects in Boston. Please 
present my compliments to your lady and all friends. 
I have the honor to be, with the warrnest attachment 
& esteem, 

Your Excellency's most obed fc serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON.* 

Roxbury, Novem r 29 th , 1782. 

Dear General, — A cartel has just arrived at Boston 
from Quebec, and has brought a number of American 
prisoners. There are among them several officers and 
about twenty soldiers who were inlisted to serve during 
the war. I have directed Lt. Colonel Popkin to forward 
the latter on to the army, to receive your Excellency's 

* Washington's answer is printed in 5 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 277, 278. — Eds. 



4 

1782.] WILLIAM HEATH. 385 

further orders. They principally belong to Connecticut 
and New York ; they are in extreme want of a pair of 
shoes each, and without them cannot proceed on their 
march. I am in hopes the shoes will be in some way 
obtained. As the officers I have seen are under parole I 
have not been able to get any intelligence of consequence 
from them. 

A brig has lately arrived from Spain ; the master re- 
ports that the British fleet had releived Gibraltar and 
returned ; that severeal of the Spanish floating batteries 
or gunboats had been destroyed by hot shot from the 
enemies' batteries before the arrival of the British fleet, 
and many men lost in them ; that one Spanish man of 
war of 74 guns was taken by the enemy, and another run 
on shore. The brig passed through the combined fleet 
going into the Bay of Cadiz as she came out. This news 
is probably true. The misfortunes of our friends are to 
be lamented, but I hope his Catholick Majesty will now 
give up his long persisted in project of reducing a post 
where there has scarcly been a shadow of success, and yet 
the whole Spanish force, both land and naval, have been 
constantly employed in the fruitless attempt, and without 
making any considerable diversion of the force of Britain. 
Had the force of Spain been employed with that of France 
against the common enemy in those places vulnerable 
great advantage might have accrued to the common 
cause, and Gibraltar might have been conquered in an- 
other quarter. 

The Marquis Vaudreuil's squadron are nearly fitted for 
sea, except the ship at Portsmouth which was injured by 
the lighting. The artillery of the French army has been 
embarked on board the fleet some days, and the army is 
to march from Providence for Boston on Sunday morning 
next. 

Should anything of consequence transpire while I am 
in this quarter both inclination and duty will prompt 

25 



386 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1783. 

me to give your Excellency the earliest intimations 
of it. 

I have the honor to be, with the greatest respect and 
warmest attachment, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 

P. S. Daniel Parker, Esq r , of this State with some other 
gentlemen have contracted to supply the army with pro- 
visions the next year. I have been many years acquainted 
with Mr. Parker, and from his disposition, abilities, and 
attention I think the army may promise themselves every- 
thing they may reasonably wish under this contract. 

W. H. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Newburgh, April 17, 1783. 

Dear General, — Your Excellency having been 
pleased to call for my sentiments on the subject of such 
military institutions as may be requisite for the interior 
defence of these States on a peace establishment, permit 
me to submit the following. — 

As the future defence and peaceable enjoyment of 
those invaluable rights and liberties, so dearly rescued 
from the jaws of tyrany, will, under Heaven, rest on the 
discipline of our armies, either of a permanent nature or 
well regulated militia, too much attention cannot possibly 
be paid to the object. From a variety of circumstances, 
which it is needless to enumerate to your Excellency, it 
appears to me, that the safety of these States would be 
most effectually secured by a standing force of com- 
pletely organized corps, consisting of such numbers as 
the infancy of our rising empire, under its load of debt, 
could maintain ; these to be posted in such parts of the 






1783.] WILLIAM HEATH. 387 

States as might be best situated for their support, and 
nearest those avenues to our country most likely to be 
seized by the enemy, should they at any future period 
aim a sudden blow : these avenues both on the water- 
side and inland frontiers are better known to your Excel- 
lency than to me, — many of them are very important 
posts, and if left unguarded, might be easily seized by 
the enemy, and if seized, give them an easy access into 
the bowels of our country. An established national 
force posted at such important places would not only 
secure them, but also establish a force which on any 
emergency might be augmented by recruits to such num- 
bers as the exigency should require. But, from the pres- 
ent genius and disposition of our countrymen, I have but 
little expectation of seeing such an establishment take 
place ; perhaps, at some future period it may be deemed 
requisite by the country. Permit me then to take the 
matter up on a less scale, and at the same time in such a 
train as may promise salutary advantages, although not 
adequate to what real safety requires. This shall be 
considered as the nerves and sinews of an army, and be 
effected as follows : first, By laying the foundation for 
the study and improvement of the science of war, and 
secondly, By preserving our present attainments in the 
mechanical parts of it : for the art of war undoubtedly is 
what the Chevalier Folard justly calls it, " a trade for the 
ignorant, a science for men of genius." The latter may 
be improved and extended by the establishment of mili- 
tary academies in such districts as may be thought 
proper, in which shall be taught the mathematics, gun- 
nery, engineering and tactics, lectures delivered on 
the sublime parts of war, &c. The former preserved by 
retaining and establishing a few corps in the respective 
States, or districts, of troops of the different denomina- 
tions of cavalry, artillery, and infantry; these may be 
stationed at such posts as require garrisons, where they 



388 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1783. 

will not only serve as guards to the public stores, but also 
jDreserve a uniformity of discipline in different parts of 
the United States, and, in case an augmentation should 
become necessary, afford able instructors to drill and 
form the recruits. This attention should extend to the 
music, which require time and attention to acquire a 
proper proficiency in the knowledge of their duty. 
Corps of this kind would not only preserve a relict of 
our present excellent discipline, and be the basis of an 
army in case of emergency in any of the States, but serve 
also as a pattern and model for the numerous militia of 
our country, who would be ambitious to imitate them. 
If neither of the foregoing can take place, dependence 
must be placed on the militia ; and in such case much 
must be done to regulate and establish discipline in their 
numerous and unwieldy bodies. This probably will be 
attempted by the legislatures of the respective States ; 
but it will be essential that a uniformity be observed in 
the great principles of discipline and manoeuvres, in arms 
and equipments, that if drawn together from different 
States they may be capable of acting together. These 
are my first thoughts on a subject which is almost with- 
out brink or bottom, and I pray your Excellency's candor 
while I humbly submit them. 
I have the honor to be, 

Your Excellency's most obedient servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency General Washington. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Newburgh, April 18 th , 1783. 

My dear Sir, — I arrived here on the 15th instant 
after a fatigueing journey. It gave me inexpressible 
pleasure and satisfaction on my journey from Boston 



1783.] JOnN HANCOCK. 3S9 

untill I had passed through Massachusetts to find your 
interest so warmly and well supported in every town on 
the road except Wilbraham, where there was said to be a 
majority of votes in favor of Colonel Worthington ; in 
several of the towns you had every vote. I learn that 
the County of Berkshire are divided ; in some towns you 
have a majority of votes, in others you have not. Upon 
the whole, I believe, you will not have any great fear 
from that quarter, and in other parts of the State have a 
majority that will be pleasing to your friends, in which 
be assured none will feel more satisfaction than myself. 
It has been hinted since I left Boston that if you were 
chosen Governor you w x ould resign. Whether there are 
any grounds for this or not, I cannot say, but if you have 
thoughts of it I pray you to wave them. To resign 
would be to gratify many of your opposers and grieve 
your friends. You have yet many of the latter, and 
warmly attached to your interests.' 

Congress have published a proclamation forbiding hos- 
tilities. No part of the British troops are withdrawn from 
New York, and Sir Guy Carleton does not appear at 
present to be in any great hurry about it. His first object 
seems to be to secure and send off the refugees. 

Please present my respectful compliments to Mrs. Han- 
cock, your son, &c. I have the honor to be, with the 
warmest attachment, my dear Sir, 

Your obed* serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



JOHN HANCOCK TO WILLIAM HEATH. 

Boston, May 2 d , 1783. 

My dear Sir, — I had the pleasure of your fav r by 
Cap* Mills, and feel myself greatly oblig'd by your partic- 



390 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1783. 

nlar notice of me. Your very kind expressions of friend- 
ship claim my warmest thanks. I sincerely congratulate 
you on the present happy aspect of our affairs. You, 
my friend, have contributed largely towards the com- 
pletion of our wishes, and now that peace has return'd I 
hope you will long live to participate the blessings of it. 

Inclos'd you will find the several papers refer'd to in 
your public letter ; the certificates are in the letters to 
Gen 1 Lincoln, which you will please to forward. # 

I wish much for the time when we can meet & talk 
over the scenes we have gone thro' in the first intro- 
duction of this contest & realize the consequences of 
your & our exertions, .& hope it is not far distant. 

I am oblig'd to close, can only add that my best wishes 
attend you for every enjoyment, & that I am with per- 
fect esteem, 

Your very hum. serv*. 

John Hancock. 

Honl Major General Heath, &c. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN HANCOCK. 

Newburgh, May 13 th , 1783. 

My dear Sir, — I have been honored with your very 
polite letter of the 2 nd instant, am much obliged by your 
expressions of friendship and good wishes. The letters 
addressed to General Lincoln have been forwarded. I 
wish for the time when I shall have the pleasure of see- 
ing you in Boston in the character of a citizen, that we 
may review and converse on the various scenes and oc- 
currences that have happened since the first resolutions 
were formed to espouse and defend the cause of our 
country, in which you, my honored friend, stood one of 

* General Heath wrote two letters to Governor Hancock (April 18 and April 19) asking 
for warrants for officers in the Massachusetts regiments who had been promoted. — Ens. 



1783.] WILLIAM HEATH. 301 

the first. I hope the time is not far distant, and no one 
can feel more anxious than I do for its arrival. 

We are waiting for the arrival of the definitive treaty. 
It is said the Emperor of Germany and Empress of Russia 
who offered their mediation to the belligerant powers are 
complimented to sign the treaty, and that probably four 
or five weeks may elapse before the treaty is received 
here. It is said there are no obstructions in the way, and 
that the above circumstance only causes the delay. When 
the definitive treaty is received here there will be the 
greatest demonstrations of joy, and exhibited in as great 
variety perhaps as has been known on any occasion. 
Great preparations have been for some time makeing. I 
wish we could be honored with your presence. Some are 
talking of coming from Philadelphia, New York, &c. 

General Washington and General Sir Guy Carleton 
have lately had an interview at Dobbs Ferry on some 
particular subjects. Sir Guy declares his intention to 
withdraw the troops as soon as it can be effected, but he 
has so many refugees to remove that it will take some 
time to get the whole away. 

It is said that a gentleman of character in England has 
written to his friend in New York that after every ex- 
ertion to obtain relief for the Loyalists they have been 
ineffectual, and that it will be left to Sir Guy Carleton to 
do the best for them in his power, that nothing now can 
be expected. Thus are those despicable wretches left in 
a situation the most folorn. Dispised by all, they are 
chagrined beyond discription. 

You will have heard of the change of the British min- 
istry before this reaches you. 

Please present my most respectfull compliments to Mrs. 

Hancock, your son, and all friends. I have the honor 

to be, with the most perfect attachment, my dear Sir, 

Your most obed. serv*. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency Governor Hancock. 



392 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1788. 



GEORGE WASHINGTON" TO WILLIAM HEATH.* 

Head Quarters, 24 th June, 1783. 
(Private.) 

Dear Sir, — Previous to your departure from the 
army I wish to take an opportunity of expressing my 
sentiments of your services, my obligations for your as- 
sistance, & my wishes for your future felicity. 

Our object is at last attained ; the arrangments are 
almost compleated ; and the day of seperation is now at 
hand. Permit me therefore to thank you for the trouble 
you have lately taken in the arrangment of the corps 
under your orders, as well as for all your former chearful 
and able exertions in the public service. Suffer me to 
offer this last testimony of my regard to your merits, 
and give me leave, my dear Sir, to assure you of the real 
affection and esteem with which I am, and shall at all 
times and under all circumstances continue to be 
Y r sincere friend, and very h ble servant. 

G° Washington. 

Maj r . Gen 1 Heath. 

A true copy from the original, which is in the General's own 
handwriting. 



lift 



WILLIAM HEATH TO ELIPHALET PORTER.f 

Roxbury, Aug st 4 th , 1788. 

Reverend Sir, — Instrumental musick was yesterday in- 
troduced into divine worship in the meetinghouse of the 

* This letter is also printed in Heath's Memoirs, pp. 385, 386. The original is not among 
the Heath Papers. — Ens. 

f In the manuscript memoirs of Rev. Dr. John Pierce, of Brookline, in the possession of 
this Society, is a very characteristic sketch of Rev. Dr. Porter, which may properly find 
a place here. Dr. Pierce writes, under date of December, 1833 : " On Saturday, 7 Decem- 
ber, at xif in the evening, died of peripneumony, in Roxbury, the Rev. Eliphalet Porter, 
D. D., pastor of the First Church there, aged 75 years, 5 months, and 29 days. On Wednes- 
day, at II p. m., his funeral was attended from his meetinghouse. An immense concourse 



I 



1788.] WILLIAM HEATH. 393 

First Church and Congregation of this town, and altho' 
for myself I am fully of opinion that the use of instru- 

assembled. A procession was formed from the dwellinghouse of the deceased. The exer- 
cises began with a voluntary on the organ. A hymn was then sung. Dr. Lowell read 
passages from Scripture, and offered a very appropriate prayer of 20 minutes. Rev. 
George Putnam, colleague of Dr. Porter, delivered a very judicious discourse of 40 minutes, 
from Gen. xxv. 8, ' Then Abraham gave up the ghost, and died in a good old age, 
an old man, and full of years, and was gathered to his people.' So just and discrimi- 
nating was he in giving the character of Dr. Porter, that they who best knew him and were 
best qualified to judge remarked that they should not desire the alteration, addition, or 
suppression of a single word. 

" Dr. Porter was born in what is now called North Bridgewater, on 11 June, 1758, the son 
of the Rev. John Porter, a native of Abington, who was ordained 15 October, 1740, and 
died 12 March, 1802, set. 87. Dr. Porter sustained a highly respectable rank as a scholar 
in the class of 1777 at Harvard University, the youngest of three brothers in the same 
class. He was ordained at Roxbury 2 Oct., 1782, with considerable opposition from some 
of the first families. Dr. Williams joined the Episcopal Church. He showed a virulent 
opposition to Dr. P. till on arriving at his 70 th year he made a dinner, and invited Dr. 
Porter for the first time to his house. Captain Joseph Williams, another principal opposer, 
was won over by a funeral sermon delivered by Dr. Porter on the death of some members 
of the family at Baltimore. 

" When politicks raged Dr. P. incurred censure from Gen. Heath, E. Seaver, Esq., and 
several of their numerous partisans, by his freedom of discussing political subjects. After 
party rage in politicks in a measure subsided, Dr. P. was holden in estimation by his 
people in general. At length infirmities of age becoming more apparent to some of his 
parishioners than to himself, after a frank discussion, the people proposed to him a col- 
league, to which measure he readily assented. Providence kindly provided for them the 
Rev. George Putnam, who has thus far more than answered the sanguine expectations 
of his people, and uniformly received the cordial approbation of his venerable colleague. 

"Dr. Porter was beneath the common stature, straight, and well proportioned. His hair, 
which was of chesnut colour, was little if any changed at his death. Neither he nor his 
father ever used spectacles! Till the latter part of his life he was subject to frequent 
returns of sick headache. In mixed company he was taciturn to an uncommon degree. 
When he uttered any thing, it was obvious that it was in words fitly spoken. With fa- 
miliar friends he could unbend and converse freely, yet with such habitual caution as often 
to occasion the remark that should his most familiar associates become his enemies they 
would find it difficult, indeed, to use against him any imprudencies of expression. When 
religious disputes were started he had a remarkable faculty of discerning points of differ- 
ence, of allowing to each controversialist his proper merit, and of bringing the subject 
to an amicable decision. 

" He was a highly valued member of the Overseers of Harvard University, and from 1818 
of the Corporation. He was treasurer for many years of the Massachusetts Congregational 
Charitable Society, whose funds are appropriated to the support of ministers' widows and 
orphans. In this trust he gave great satisfaction. He was an original trustee of the Bible 
Society of Massachusetts, founded in 1809. He was among the founders of the Society 
for the Suppression of Intemperance. For many years he was moderator of the Boston 
Association, by whom he was greatly valued for judicious counsel. 

"Three or four years ago he suffered greatly from an enlargement of the prostate gland. 
Since this, it has been obvious to his friends that he was gradually sinking. Such was the 
precision with which he transacted business that he subjected himself to the imputation of 
closeness from persons who were not men of their word, or who from any cause judged that 
he ought to relax in their favour the rules of strict justice. He was, however, noted for 
charity to the poor ; and to every good work he was always ready. 

" As a preacher he was not in the common acceptation of the term popular. He, however, 



94 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1788. 



mental musick in divine worship may be vindicated both 
from Scripture and reason, yet I conceive that for obvious 
reasons it ought not to be introduced without the consent 
and approbation of the Church. As I have not heard 
that either have been requested or obtaind, I cannot re- 
frain from addressing you on the subject. If the 
young gentlemen who favor the Congregation by leading 
the sin^ino; introduced instrumental musick of their own 
motion, I think it was going too far and invading the 
rights of the Church. Nor can I persuade myself to 
believe that any individuals would advise to the measure 
untill the sense of the Church was known, as this would 
be arrogating to themselves a power which I presume 
no individuals have a right to exercise in the Church. 
Permit me therefore to request (for the satisfaction of 
my own mind) to be informed how and in what man- 
ner the introduction mentioned took place. While it is 
my ardent desire not only to join, but also to encour- 
age every thing which may tend to the furtherance of 
publick devotion, I wish to see every, thing conducted 
decently and in order. 

I am, Reverend Sir, with great regard & esteem, 
Your obed* ser\ rt . 

W. Heath. 

Revd Eliphlat Porter. 

wrote his sermons in a plain and logical style, and delivered them with unusual distinct- 
ness. Deaf people could hear him better than almost any other man. He composed his 
discourses with great labour; and he often repeated them to his people. His devotional 
services were highly appropriate, though but little varied. For myself I must say that 
I deplore his departure as the loss of a highly valued counsellor and friend. In 1807 he 
received the degree of D. D. from Harvard University. 

"List of his publications: Thanksgiving Discourse on the Peace, 1783; Discourse to the 
Roxbury Charitable Society, 1794 ; Fast Discourse, 1798 ; Sermon on the Death of Gov. 
Sumner, 1799; Eulogy on Washington, 1800; Discourse before the Humane Society, 1802; 
Sermon at the Ordination of Rev. Chs. Lowell, 1 Jan., 1806; Before Society for propagat- 
ing the Gospel, 5 Nov. 1807; Convention Sermon, 31 May, 1810; Artillery Election 
Sermon, 1 June, 1812; Sermon, Ordination Rev. J. G. Palfrey, 17 June, 1818. 

" During the 3^ years he had a colleague he preached but 11 sermons, one 2 Oct., 1832, 
a half century sermon. 

"The last time he preached at Brookline was 28 March, 1830, aet. 72, lacking 44 
davs." — Eds. 



1797.] WILLIAM HEATH. 395 



WILLIAM HEATH TO JOHN ADAMS. 

Roxbury, April 10 th , 1797. 

Sir, — After public bodies and more elevated citizens, 
be pleased to accept the congratulations of an old Repub- 
lican on your advancment to the Presidential chair of 
the United States of America. 

In a letter which you did me the honor to write me 
dated at Philadelphia, April 15 th , 1776,* you were pleased 
to observe, "Altho I never had the pleasure and the 
honour of so intimate an acquaintance with you as I 
wished, yet I have a long time been sufficiently ac- 
quainted with your character to have the utmost con- 
fidence in your patriotism and your judgment of the 
true interest of our country." Whatever grounds, Sir, 
you had for such an opinion of me, with equal sincer- 
ity and better grounds, I express myself to you in the 
same sentiments, and most heartily congratulate you 
and my country on your advancment to be her first 
majestrate. 

You are called, Sir, to guide the affairs of the States at 
a time critical and difficult, but by no means desperate, 
and for one I rest fully satisfied that your knowledge of 
mankind, love for your native country, and clear discern- 
ment of what is for her true interest will enable you to 
lead your fellow citizens in that path under the guidance 
of Heaven which will be honorary to yourself and accept- 
able to the multitude of your brethren. 

To be at peace, if it be possible, with all the world, to 
obtain right by fair negotiation rather than by the sword, 
to treat all with justice and civility, to give those the first 
seats who prove themselves our best friends, but to avoid 
being under the influence or controul of any, to honour 

* Printed in 7 Mass. Hist. Coll., vol. iv. pp. 9, 10. —Eds. 



396 THE HEATH PAPERS. [1797. 

ourselves by loving our own country, to be united in this 
love, and in an invariable support of the Constitutions 
and the laws, and in the practise of the public and private 
virtues — will not fail to render the United States that 
great and flourishing people which Providence seems to 
have designed them to be. That you, Sir, will be an in- 
strument of contributeing largely to this I am fully con- 
fident, and you may rest assured that you will have the 
mite of an old man in private life, added to the able exer- 
tions of united America, in support of your endeavours to 
serve your country. 

With every wish for your health and an administration 
prosperous to yourself and your country, 

I have the honor to be, most respectfully, Sir, 
Your most humble servant. 

W. Heath. 

His Excellency John Adams. 



WILLIAM HEATH TO GEORGE WASHINGTON. 

Roxbury, April 17 th , 1797. 

Sir, — When you first ascended the highest seat in the 
government of the United States, I could not but address 
you on an event so auspicious to our country. Perhaps 
you might then think that I was pressing myself into 
notice or seeking for a place. But be assured, my honor- 
able friend, that my heart is now as much attached to you 
on your retreat from public life as when you commenced 
a career which from experience, I knew would be advan- 
tageous to your country. 

The present situation of the United States is critical and 
embarrassing, but it is presumed that the wisdom of her 
government is sufficient to extricate her, with the bless- 
ing of Heaven, from her difficulties without either the 
shedding of blood or prostituting of honour. 



1797] WILLIAM HEATH. 397 

I am now arrived at threescore years of age, and I 
know that my glass is nearly run. I am looking back on 
those scenes through which I have been called to pass, 
and frequently turn over the numerous orders which I 
had the honor to receive from you when under your 
immediate command, and the manner in which they were 
executed. 

From the commencement of the American war to this 
time I have kept a daily journal, now swelled to some 
thousand pages. From this journal I am now writing 
Memoirs, containing anecdotes, details of skirmishes, bat- 
tles, and other military events during the war. This 
with the public and private business incumbent on me 
engrosses my time. 

Heaven only knows whether I shall ever have another 
oppertunity or have the honour of again writing to you ; 
be that as it may, my ardent wishes for your health and 
happiness will follow you in your retirement, and be com- 
mensurate with my existence in life. 

I pray you be pleased to present my best respects to 
your amiable lady, with every wish a grateful heart can 
express for her health and prosperity. 

And now, my great and honoured friend, may that 
kind Providence which has so often shielded you when 
in danger still hold you in his holy keeping, guild the 
evening of your days with every necessary comfort and 
consolation for many years to come, and at last receive 
you to the everlasting rewards of the faithful. 

I have the honor to be, with every sentiment of re- 
spect, Sir, 

Your most humble servant. 

W. Heath. 

George Washington, Esq r . 



398 



THE HEATH PAPERS. 



[1797, 



JOHN ADAMS TO WILLIAM HEATH. 



Philadelphia, April 19, 1797. 

Sir, — I have rec d the letter you did me the honour to 
write me on the tenth of this month. 

The date of this letter reminds me that it is two and 
twenty years since our final seperation from Britain, and 
my letter which you quote recalls old times and scenes 
to remembrance. 

I thank you. Sir, for your kind congratulations on my 
advancement. 

The times appear not to me so critical and difficult as 
they did on the 19 Ap., 1775, but they are not without 
their dangers. Although peace be very desireable, and 
should be cultivated with zeal, there is such a thing as a 
just and necessary war sometimes, let the Quakers say 
what they will. If we have a war, it will be forced upon 
us, much against our inclinations, but I know not that we 
need tremble before any nation at a thousand leagues 
distance in a just cause. 

With great esteem, I have the honour to be, Sir, 
Your most obedient and humble servant. 

John Adams. 

Major General Heath. 



APPENDIX. 



EXTRACTS FROM GENERAL HEATH'S ORDERLY BOOK. 

Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb^ 6, 1782. 

The following are extracts from the Orders of his Excellency, 
the Commander in Chief . . . 

"Head Quarters, Philadelphia, Jan^ 29, 1782. 

" A general court martial for the trial of Major General McDougall 
on sundry charges exhibited by Major General Heath will assemble 
at West-point as soon as possible. Major General Lord Stirling is 
appointed president. The deputy adjutant general of the eastern 
army will detail the members. 

" Edw d Hand, A. G l ." 

As soon as Major General Lord Stirling arrives at this post 
the members of the court will be named, and the place of the 
court's sitting pointed out. 



Head Quarters, Highlands, Feb^ 13, 1782. 
"Head Quarters, Jany 29, 1782. 

"The general court martial for the trial of Major General 
M c Dougall may be holden at Westpoint, or some convenient place 
in its vicinity. 

" Extract from General Orders. 

" Edw d Hand, A. Gen'." 

The general court martial whereof Major General Lord Stir- 
ling is president appointed for the trial of Major General 
M c Dougall is to sit at M r Cooper's tavern in Fishkill on Mon- 
day next, the 18 th of this instant February at ten o'clock, A. M. 
Brigadiers General James Clinton and Paterson, Colonels 
Shepard, Swift, Putnam, H. Jackson, and Butler, Lieuten- 



400 APPENDIX. 

ant Colonels Commandant Smith and Sherman, Lieutenant 
Colonel Grosvenor, Majors Throop and Spurr will attend as 
members. All evidences and persons concerned to attend the 
court. 



Head Quarters, Highlands, Feby 17. 

Lieutenant Colonel Huntington is appointed a member of the 
general court martial of which Major General Lord Stirling is 
president in the room of Colonel Butler. 



" Head Quarters, Newburgh, April 7, 1782. 

"The trial of Major General M c Dougall having been delayed by 
his objecting to the president and some of the members of the 
court martial which was constituted for the purpose of trying him, 
and there being no rule yet established in our military code of laws 
by which the right or limitation of challenges is ascertained, but 
the president and members excepted against having expressed a 
desire to be excused from that duty; it is therefore ordered that 
Major-General Howe preside at the said court, and that other 
members be appointed in the places of those who have been chal- 
lenged and decline serving, as also of those who may be absent. 
The court will assemble at Westpoint or some convenient place in 
the vicinity on Wednesday next. 

" Transcript of General Orders. 

u John Carlisle, Ass. Adjutant Gen 1 " 



Highlands, April 8, 1782. 
The general court martial whereof Major-General Howe is 
appointed president by the orders of the Commander in Chief 
of the 7 instant, is to sit at West-point on Wednesday next at 
ten o'clock, A. M., of which all concerned will please to take 
notice and attend. The court will be composed of the follow- 
ing members, viz., Brigadiers-General J. Clinton and Paterson, 
Colonels Shepard, Swift, M. Jackson, H. Jackson, Lieutenant 
Colonels Commandant Brooks, Smith, and Sherman, Lieutenant 
Colonels Vose, Huntington, and Gray. . 



APPENDIX. 401 

Highlands, April 9, 1782. 

AFTER ORDERS. 

Major Ashley is appointed a member of the general court 
martial whereof Major General Howe is president; vice Lieu- 
tenant Colonel Huntington who is indisposed. 



Highlands, April 13, 1782. 
" Head Quarters, Newburgh, April 12. 
" The general court martial whereof Major General Howe is presi- 
dent will assemble at West-point tomorrow." 



AFTER ORDERS. 

Highlands, April 13, 1782. 

Colonel Greaton is appointed a member of the general court 
martial whereof General Howe is president, in the room of 
Brigadier General Clinton, who is prevented attending on ac- 
count of indisposition. 



Highlands, April 14, 1782. 

The general court martial whereof Major General Howe is 
president will sit tomorrow morning, 11 o'clock ; of which all 
concerned will take notice and attend. Colonel Samuel B. 
Webb will attend as a member vice Colonel Greaton. Colonel 
Nicola, of the corps of invalids, will please to attend at West- 
point to-morrow, and will likewise be considered a member if 
there should be objections to any who are at present appointed. 



Highlands, April 15, 17S2. 
AFTER ORDERS. 

The general court martial of which Major-General Howe is 
president will sit tomorrow, eleven o'clock, A. M. 

26 



402 APPENDIX. 

Highlands, April 16, 1782. 

Should any circumstance prevent the general court martial 
whereof Major-General Howe is president being formed this 
clay the members will convene again to-morrow, and so from 
day to day until the court is organized, and proceed to 
business. 

"Head Quarters, Newburgh, April 15, 1782. 

" The officers appointed as members of the court martial whereof 
Major-General Howe is president are to attend to that duty in pref- 
erence to any other until the business before them is finished. 
" Transcript of General Orders. 

" Robert Pemberton, Ass* Adf Gen*." 



Highlands, April 17, 1782. 

Lieutenant Colonel Commandant Sprout will attend the 
court martial whereof General Howe is president in the room 
of Colonel Nicola, and if there should be objections to any of 
the present members he will be considered as a member. 



"Head Quarters, Newburgh, August 1. 

" Major General Howe and the members of the court martial of 
which he is president are to return to their duty in the line until 
further orders." 



Head Quarters, Newburgh, August 28. 

At a general court martial whereof Major General Howe is 
president, held at West-point by order of the Commander in 
Chief, Major General M c Dougall was tried on the following 
charges, viz. 

1. For ordering the distribution of a quantity of boards (said 
to be about thirteen hundred which were brought to West- 
point the 6 day of December last in a sloop commanded by 
Captain Van Alstine, designed for the use of the department) 
to the troops at West-point only, when their arrival ought to 



APPENDIX. 403 

have been reported to the commanding general or deputy quar- 
termaster of the department, that an equal distribution might 
have been ordered, and other troops who equally needed them, 
some of whom were suffering with the small pox, might have 
received relief. 

2. For not reporting to the commanding general the escape 
of upwards of thirty prisoners from the provost at West-point 
on the night of the 4 instant that orders might have been sent 
to the outposts to take measures to intercept them on their 
way to the enemy, and it being an occurrence which ought to 
have been reported. 

3. For drawing orders on the clothing store at Newburgh, 
particularly on October 2, 5, 8, 11, 18, 19, 27, 28, 29, and No- 
vember 7, 10, 12 and 18, and one for a servant of Ensign Davis, 
without date, which is the prerogative of the commanding gen- 
eral only, and which he signified to General M c Dougall of the 
26 of September last, such his orders besides invading the right 
of the commanding general have involved some of the pay- 
masters in embarrassments in their accounts, particularly the 
paymaster of the 3 Massachusetts regiment. 

4. In writing a letter to the commanding general on the 16 
day of December last, injurious to command and unbecoming an 
officer, — the letter as follows ; 

West Point, December 16, 1781, 7 p. m. 

Sir, — To be prepared for every contingency which might 
happen on the river to interrupt our transportation Colonel 
Putnam was out for several days to reconnoitre the country on 
both sides of the river for the most practicable routes to open 
roads to bring in our provisions and forage. He had not com- 
pleted it when he was ordered on court martial, although he 
was for that important object kept off duty in garrison. The 
distress we now suffer is owing to his not being able to com- 
plete his observations, there being a supply of flour above the 
mountains, but neither the roads nor the river was practicable. 

This is one of the disorderly effects of detailing the officers 
of this garrison with the army ; nor is this the only instance of 
disorder from that practice. An officer who was on main guard 
for a week was detailed for other duty. I shall not enter into 
any further discussion on this subject till the Commander in 



404 APPENDIX. 

Chief comes on, when I shall apply to him to have this and 
several other unmilitary practices determined in a more solemn 
manner than can now be obtained; for, Sir, give me leave to 
tell you, I know my own rights and those of the garrison not in 
speculation, but in as long and as attentive service as my supe- 
riors. In the mean time, Sir, that service may not be injured, 
and that the distressing and pressing calls of humanity may be 
relieved, I beg Colonel Putnam may be relieved and suffered to 
go on that service. 

I have the honor to be, Sir, your most obedient and most 
humble servant, 

Alex. M c Dougall. 

M. Gen 1 Heath. 

5. For directing Colonel Crane, commandant of artillery in 
this department, to deliver arms and accoutrements on the 16 
instant contrary to the General's order of the 4 instant, and 
threatening to send him to the provost in case of refusal. 

6. For conversing before the field officers of the several corps 
stationed in the garrison of West Point who were convened at 
his request on the 16 January last, and in manner unbecoming 
an officer by bringing into question General Heath's right to 
command the garrison of West Point, representing his orders as 
unmilitary ; saying that an officer was not bound or obliged to 
obey orders if he thought them improper or unmilitary ; telling 
Colonel Crane that he had ill advisers, he believed ; that he 
believed General Heath had advised him ; desiring Colonel 
Crane to take the advice of the officers present, who he said 
were his countrymen ; and many other things in the course of 
the said conversation tending to excite sedition, create divi- 
sions, subvert good order and discipline, and wound the 
service. 

7. The conversing before officers of different ranks, particu- 
larly on the evening of the 7 January last, in a manner unbe- 
coming an officer, saying that General Heath's orders were 
subversive of all good order and discipline and injurious from 
the centinel to the eldest major general in service, that he sent 
private commands to Colonel Crane without informing him 
[General McDougall] for the removal of a considerable quan- 
tity of ammunition from the magazine, and that if such a prac- 
tice prevailed in the army it would be in the power of an 






APPENDIX. 405 

Arnold at any time to dismantle and sell the garrison, and 
publicly relating some matters that passed at a council of war 
at M" M c Gowen's in 1776, respecting the retreat from New 
York, and saying that none were opposed to it but a fool, a 
knave, and an obstinate honest man, that General Heath was 
the knave, and many other things in the course of the said con- 
versation, — such conversation tending to lessen confidence in 
the commanding officer, to limit command, bring orders into 
contempt and destroy that due subordination which is the life 
of discipline and the only barrier against confusion and disorder. 

Lastly. For ordering two public buildings near Fish-kill- 
hmding to be pulled down in the months of November and 
December last, viz., a bakehouse and one other building which 
M r George Fisher was ordered to pull down on the 18 of De- 
cember last, and the materials to be removed to West Point, 
making additions and erecting buildings at West Point without 
the knowledge or consent of the commanding general, particu- 
larly the additions to the house in which General M c Dougall 
quarters and the building for the provost guard, when General 
M c DougalPs command at the post was of a temporary nature 
only & such measures not warranted either by his instructions 
or military principles. 

The court on mature consideration of the charges against 
Major General M c Dougall, the evidence in the case, and the 
observations both by General M c Dougall and the judge advo- 
cate are of opinion : On the first charge, that Major General 
M c Dougall did order the distribution of the boards mentioned 
in the charge to the troops of West Point only, and that he is 
justifiable in so doing, because though the boards in the first 
instance might have been designed for the army at large, yet 
as the manner in which they were applied for to the quarter- 
master was agreeable to the custom of commandants of West 
Point, and specified the particular purpose for which the boards 
were intended, were sent to the post on such application, and 
receipted for by the officer who received them, to be delivered 
at West Point, he was warranted in such distribution, without 
a report being made to the commanding general or deputy 
quartermaster of the department. 

On the 2 charge, it appears to the court that General 
M c Dougall is justifiable in not reporting the escape of the 



406 APPENDIX. 

prisoners to Major General Heath because the provost mar- 
shall of the army was at the post by order of General Heath, 
whose duty it was to make such report. 

On the 3 charge, it appears to the court that General 
M c Dougall did draw orders on the clothing store on October 
8, 18, 19, 28, November 7 and 10, and an order for clothing for 
Ensign Davis's servant, and that he is justifiable in so doing, 
because it has been customary and was requisite to service for 
officers of different grades to draw clothing from the clothing- 
store for necessitous soldiers ; detached issues have been accord- 
ingly constantly made and there has appeared to the court no 
orders to the contrary. It does not appear that General 
M c Dougall drew the other orders mentioned in the charge. 

On the 4 charge, the court are of opinion that General 
M c Dougall is justifiable. 

On the 5 charge, it appears that General M c Dougall did 
order Colonel Crane to deliver arms and accoutrements on the 
16 January last, and threatned upon his refusal to send him 
to the provost or confine to his room, but as Colonel Crane was 
a member of the garrison, and being senior officer of artillery at 
that time, had the keys of the military stores for the defence 
of the garrison, and under the orders of General M c Dougall, 
commandant thereof, the court are of opinion that General 
M c Dougall was justifiable for giving the orders, and for threat- 
ning to confine him for a disobedience of them, notwithstand- 
ing the orders of General Heath of the 4 of January last 
relative to the grand magazine. 

On the 6 charge, the embarrassments Major General 
M c Dougall laboured under by the order of Major General 
Heath of the 4 of January last and other orders mentioned in 
evidence, his official rights as commandant of the garrison being 
thereby invaded, the magazines shut against his orders, which 
disenabled him from drawing forth the necessary means for its 
defence in case of any emergency, the garrison officer through 
whom arms, ammunition, &c, were attainable refusing obedi- 
ence to his legal orders, and directing no return to be made to 
Major General M c Dougall of the state of the magazine where 
stores were deposited for its defence are in the opinion of the 
court sufficient to justify Major General M c Dougall in con- 
vening the field officers of the several corps stationed in the 






APPENDIX. 407 

garrison on the 16 of January last, and for the whole of his 
conversation with them at that time. That part of the charge 
bringing in question Major General Heath's right to command 
the garrison of West Point, saying that an officer was not 
bound or obliged to obey orders if he thought them improper 
or unmilitary, is not supported. 

On the 7 charge, the court find that General M c Dougall did 
converse before officers of different grades, accidentally met at 
his quarters on the 7 of January last, and did say that General 
Heath's orders were subversive of all good order and discipline, 
and injurious from the centinel to the eldest major general in 
service, that he sent private commands to Colonel Crane with- 
out informing him [General M c Dougall] for the removal of a 
considerable quantity of ammunition from the magazine, and 
that if such a practice prevailed in the army it would be in the 
power of an Arnold at any time to dismantle and sell the garri- 
son, and publicly related some matters that passed at a council 
of war at M rs M c Gowen's in 1776 respecting the retreat from 
New York, and said that none were opposed to it but a fool, a 
knave & an obstinate honest man, and that General Heath was 
the knave, and are of opinion that the time, the place, the man- 
ner of expressing what is set forth in the charge, and the per- 
sons before whom he did express it, render such conversation 
unjustifiable and in breach of article 5 section 18 of the rules 
and articles of war. 

On the last charge, it appears to the court that the bake- 
house was pulled down on an application from Major General 
M c Dougall to Colonel Hughes, the deputy quartermaster, by 
his direction ; that the other building was ordered by General 
M c Dougall on the 18 of December last to be pulled down, but 
was not pulled down on that order, but by order of Colonel 
Pickering, Quartermaster General, and that the materials were 
removed to West Point; that General M c Dougall did erect a 
building for a provost guard and made additions to the house 
in which he quartered, bat it appears to the court from a letter 
produced in the case that General Heath knew and approved 
the building a provost guard house, therefore that General 
M c Dougall erecting the same was not, as is said in the charge, 
without the knowledge and consent of the commanding general. 
The court are of opinion that from constant usage of command- 



408 ' APPENDIX. 

ants of West Point, never jet interdicted, General M c Dougall 
is justifiable in making additions to the house in which he 
quarters. 

The court agreeable to their opinion on the several charges 
do fully acquit Major General M c Dougall on the first, second, 
fifth, and sixth charges. On the fourth they acquit him. On 
the third and last charges they fully acquit him, and think the 
charges vexatious. On the seventh charge the}?- sentence him 
to be reprimanded by the Commander in Chief in general orders. 

"By the United States in Congress assembled, August 15, 1782. 

" The proceedings and sentence of a general court-martial on the 
trial of Major General M c Dougall having been read, 

" Eesolved, that Congress approve the sentence of the said 
court." 

It is with extreme reluctance the Commander in Chief finds 
himself under the necessity of carrying the sentence of the 
court upon the 7 charge into execution, more especially as it 
concerns an officer of so high rank and generally acknowledged 
merit. 

The ill consequences arising from a too free censure of officers 
of superior by those of inferior rank are too obvious to need 
enumerating. The Commander in Chief cannot, however, help 
remarking particularly upon the impropriety of one member of 
a council of war divulging the opinion of another (except in 
cases of criminality, which could not fail to be immediately 
noticed) and undertaking to reflect publicly upon him for it. 
Such a liberty, if allowed, would very often tend to prevent an 
officer of coolness and deliberation from giving his opinion in 
favor of cautious measures, lest the army and the world at large 
should attribute his reasons to other than the real motive. 

Major-General M c Dougall is released from his arrest. 

The general court martial of which Major General Howe is 
president is dissolved. 






INDEX 



INDEX. 



Adamant, British ship of war, 367. 

Adams, Hon. John, letter to, on his elec- 
tion to the Presidency, from William 
Heath, 305. Letter from, to William 
Heath, 398. 

Adams, , 323. 

Albany, plan to burn, 239. General 
Stark's characterization of, 242, 243. 

Allan, Col. John, 63, 65, 102. 

Allen, Major Jonathan, accidentally shot 
on a hunting party, 14. 

Alliance, frigate, 81, 205. 

Andre, Major John, execution of, 111. 

Angell, Col. Isaac, 76, 78. 

Anspach regiment, 51. 

Antill, Lieut.-Col. Edward, 136, 191. 

Apedale, Dr. , 60. 

Arbuthnot, Admiral Marriot, 88, 104, 107, 
108,109, 110, 190. 

Armand, Col. Charles Tufln, Marquis de 
la Rouerie, 152. 

Army, representation of the officers at 
West Point, complaining of the allow- 
ance of provisions, 3. 

Arnold, Gen. Benedict, 112, 127, 168, 171, 
178, 181, 184, 192, 263, 264, 265, 336, 
353, 355, 359. 

Artificers, rations for, 351. 

Ashley, Major M., appointed a member of 
the court martial for the trial of Gen. 
McDougall, in place of Col. Hunting- 
ton indisposed, 401. Mentioned, 176. 

Aurora, privateer, 43. 

Austin, John, 184. 



B. 

Badlam, Lieut.-Col. Ezra, 32, 369, 373, 375, 

376, 381. 

Bailey, Capt. , 9. 

Bailey, Gen. Jacob, 323. 

Baker, George, 127. 

Baldwin, Col. Jeduthan, 152. 

Ballacum, Elijah, 133. 

Bancroft, Capt. James, 53. 

Banister, Capt. Seth, 375, 376. 

Barber, Nathaniel, Jr., 40. 

Barfleur, British ship of the line, 232. 

Barrett, Samuel, 300, 301. 

Barry, Capt. John, 205. 

Bartiett, Hon. Josiah, notice of, 273«. 

Letter from, to William Heath, 273. 
Bauman, Major Sebastian, 14, 157, 190. 



Beef for the army, need of regular sup- 
plies of, 196, 199, 200, 206, 208,216,218. 

Bellows, Gen. Benjamin, 274. 

Bi^elow, Col. Timothy, 9. 

Boris, , 13. 

Bostwick, Andrew, 10. 

Bounty for Massachusetts soldiers, 60, 
114, 119, 166, 167,179. 

Bowdoin, Hon. James, letters to, from 
William Heath, 92, 93, 108. Mentioned, 
63, 65, 82. 

Bowen, Jabez, Dep. Gov. of Rhode Island, 
letter from, to William Heath, 85. 

Bradford, Col. Gamaliel, 4. 

Bradley, Ensign Levi, 31, 33. 

Bread for the army, allowance of, 135, 285. 

Brewster, Capt. C, 289, 311. 

Brooks, Lieut.-Col. John, 29, 164. Ap- 
pointed a member of the court martial 
for the trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 

Brooks, D., 298. 

Broome, , 111, 113. 

Brown, Samuel, 173. 

Brown, Gen. , 51. 

Brown, , 251. 

Budd, ,131. 

Burgoyne, Gen. John, 256,299. 

Burley, Lieut. William, 31, 33. 

Bush, David, 11. 

Butler, Col. John, 60. Appointed a 
member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 399. Men- 
tioned, 400. 

Butt's Hill, near Newport, R. I., 89, 96, 
100, 101, 102, 105. 



C. 

Campbell, Major John, 7, 19, 145. 
Canada, proposed expedition against the 

British in, 304. 
Carleton, Gen. Sir Guy, 383, 389, 391. 
Carleton, Major Thomas, 125. 
Carpenter, Increase, 313. 
Cart wright, Capt. Thomas, 41. 
Chaffault de Resne, Louis Charles, Comte 

de, 80, 81. 
Champion, Col. Henry, 215. 
Charleston, S. C, British expedition to, 

48, 51, 54, 56, 57, 58, 59, 61, 63, 75. 
Charlestown, N. H. (No. 4), 257. 
Charlus de la Croix, Comte, 128. 
Charon, British frigate, 290. 
Chastellux, Francois Jean, Marquis de, 

98, 128, 136, 145. 



412 



INDEX. 



Clavarack, N. Y., 209, 221, 224, 345, 346, 
349. 

Clinton, Gov. George, letters to, from 
William Heath, 11, 15, 123, 182, 303, 
319. Letters from, to William Heath, 
122, 321. Mentioned, 11, 17, 29, 35, 
114, 118, 125, 156, 232, 235, 294, 296. 

Clinton, Sir Henry, 49, 51, 56, 57, 75, 85, 
91, 94, 90, 101, 104, 112, 117, 183, 190, 
240, 247, 256, 264, 271, 279, 282, 283, 
284, 286, 287, 288, 291, 312, 313. 

Clinton, Gen. James, 124, 141. Appointed 
a member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. MeDougall, 399, 400. 
Indisposed and Col. Greaton appointed 
in his place, 401. 

Clothing for the army, need of, 33, 36, 
43, 126, 139, 140, 197, 209, 211, 333, 336. 

Cohb, Gen. David, notice of, 294n. Let- 
ter from, to William Heath, 294. 

Cochran, Dr. John, 335. 

Colt, Peter, 27. 

Confederacy, frigate, 192. 

Connecticut, location of the troops from, 
in Dec, 1780, 138. Necessary supplies 
to be forwarded from, 196. Votes to 
send supplies immediately, 198. Cloth- 
ing for the army in tolerable forward- 
ness, 202. Quantity of rum needed 
from, 204. Urgent request from Gen. 
Heath that rum should be immediately 
sent from, to the army, 213. Gov. 
Trumbull's account of what has been 
done, 214-216. Protection for the 
western part of the State desired, 237. 
Mutinous intentions among troops of, 
373. 

Conway, Gen. Henry S., motion of, in the 
House of Commons, 370. 

Cook, Lieut. , 108. 

Cooper, Capt. , 30, 31. 

Coram, L. I., destruction of the British 
magazine at, 137. 

Cornell, Gen. Ezekiel, 212. 

Cornwallis, Charles, Marquis, 75, 233, 
240,247, 256, 260, 261, 264, 266, 271, 
276, 279, 280, 281, 282, 283, 288, 289, 
291, 294, 295, 312, 324. 

Corny, Louis Dominique Ethis de, 69,82. 

Cotton, Isaac, 341. 

Craik, Dr. James, 72, 79, 374. 

Crane, Col. John, 36, 43, 152, 225, 306, 
339, 367, 404, 406, 407. 

Craneneck, L. I., 309, 310. 

Cushing, Hon. Thomas, notice of, 118m. 
Letter to, from William Heath, 118. 
Mentioned, 102, 114. 



Damours (Damas, Joseph F. L. C. ?), 

Comte, 145. 
Danbury, Conn., 5. 
Davis, Caleb, letters to, from William 

Heath, 169, 181. 
Davis, Ensign , 403, 406. 



Day, , quartermaster, 173. 

Deane, //a/ate, 43, 58. 

De Lancey, Col. James, 32, 91, 144, 146, 

168, 177, 178, 247, 254, 263, 271, 338, 360. 
Depreciation of the currency, 18, 41. 
Deserters, 9, 13, 336, 379, 381. 
Deux Ponts regiment, 205. 
Digby, Admiral Robert, 248, 264, 275, 276, 

291, 312. 
Discontent among the officers in the 

army, 39, 40, 44, 45, 51, 373. 
Dobbs' Ferry, 181. 
Donop, Carl E. K., Count, 313. 
Drake, Commodore Francis S., 108, 109. 
Drake, Col. Samuel, 132. 
Drew, Capt. Seth, 4. 
Drought in Rhode Island, in the summer 

of 1780, 86. 
Duke of Cumberland, packet, 370. 

Duncan, Capt. , 342. 

Dunham, Capt. , 275, 276. 

Duville, Capt. Peter, 75, 78. 



E. 

Eayers, Ephraim, 341. 

Edgar, Capt. John, 323, 324. 

Edwards, Thomas, letter to, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 367. 

Emmerick, Col. Andreas, 32. 

Enlistments for the army, 36, 37, 38. 

Enos, Gen. Roger, 292. 

Estaing, Charles Hector, Comte d', 71. 

Express riders, not to be maintained at 
the public expense, 26. 



Farley, Lieut. Michael, 30, 31, 33. 

Felton, , 379. 

Fernald, Lieut.-Col. Tobias, 376. 

Ferris, Joshua, 142, 144. 

Fisher, George, 405. 

Fishkill, N. Y., escape of prisoners at, 

118, 143. Insecurity of the prisoners 

at, 172. 
Fitch, John, 27. 

Flanders, , 251. 

Flint, , 236. 

Flour for the army, 5, 6, 12, 15, 24, 25. 

Flowers, Capt. Samuel, 23. 

Flucker, Thomas, 41. 

Folard, Chevalier Jean Charles de, 387. 

Foraging, 129-133, 137, 145, 146. 

Fort Ann, 114. 

Fort Clinton, 22. 

Fort Edward, 114. 

Fort George, 114. 

Fort Herkimer, 122, 321. 

Fort Putnam, 22. 

Fort Rensselaer, 322. 

Fort St. George, capture of, by Major 

Tallmadge, 137. 
Fort Schuyler, 114, 122, 124, 125, 127, 

196, 199. 



INDEX. 



413 



Fort Rlongo. 251, 265, 271, 277, 278. 

Fort Washington, 13, 32, 168, 271. 

Fowler, Ensign Stephen, 31, 33. 

Francis, Tench, extract from instructions 
given him with reference to the trans- 
portation of specie from Boston to 
Philadelphia, 245. Mentioned, 241, 244, 
276. 

Francis, , 22. 

Franklin, Dr. Benjamin, Irish promises 
to, 55. 

Franklin, privateer, 60. 

Frederick the Great, King of Prussia, 53, 
56. 

Freeman, Lieut. , 383. 

French army in America, organization 
of, 67 et. seq. Difficulty of Frenchmen 
in driving American horses, 103. Win- 
ter quarters for, 106. 

Frink, Nathan, 173. 

Frye, Ensign Nathaniel, 142. 

G. 

G., S , letters of secret intelligence from, 
252, 263, 265, 287, 313. Confinement 
of, 312, 313. 

Gamble, James, 225. 

Gansevoort, Gen. Peter, 114, 122, 125,291, 
292, 293. 

Gardner. David, 356. 

Gardner's Island, 103, 104, 108, 109, 110. 

Gates, Gen. Horatio, 86. 

Georgia, 278. 

Germain, Lord George, 359. 

Germany, Emperor of, 391. 

Gibhs, Major Caleb,' 294. 

Gillchrist,' Charles, 344. 

Gimat, Col. , 98. 

Glover, Gen. John, letter from, to William 
Heath, 314. Desertions from his bri- 
gade, 9. Mentioned, 76, 79, 80, 118, 349. 

Godfrey, Gen. George, 95. 

Granger, , 117. 

Grasse-Tilly, Francois J. P., Comte de, 
265, 276, 283, 287, 291, 295. 

Graves, Admiral Thomas, 88, 264, 312. 

Gray, Col. Eben, appointed a member of 
the court martial for the trial of Gen. 
McDougall, 400. 

Greaton, Col. John, notice of, 378 n. Let- 
ter from, to William Heath, 378. Men- 
tioned, 159. Appointed a member of 
the court martial for the trial of Gen. 
McDougall. in place of Gen. Clinton, 
401. Succeeded by Col. Samuel B. 
Webb,?6. 

Greene, Col. Christopher, 73, 74, 76, 78, 
79, 82, 87, 89, 90, 101, 102, 105, 109, 
189. 

Greene, Maj.-Gen. Nathanael, 18, 94, 113, 
114, 121, 176, 185,287,295. 

Greene, William, Gov, of Rhode Island, 
letters from, to William Heath, 95, 100. 
Mentioned, 72, 108, 201, 205, 211, 220, 
221. 



Grosvenor, Col. Thomas, 317, 319. Ap- 
pointed a member of the court martial 
for the trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 

II. 

Ilaight, , 131. 

Hale, Major , 18, 21. 

Halifax, 'N.S., military and naval situa- 
tion at, in 1780, 64, 65, 76. A favorite 
object of attack for the French, 80. 

Hamilton, Col. Alexander, 98. 

Hancock, Ebenezer, Deputy Paymaster 
General, 43. 

Hancock, Hon. John, letters to, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 154, 164, 166, 175, 208, 222, 
227, 261, 262, 275, 290, 369, 383, 388, 
390. Letters from, to William Heath, 
248, 389. Mentioned, 152, 201 , 208, 225, 
247. 

Hancock, Mrs. John, 262, 370, 384, 389, 
391. 

Harris, Lieut. , 360. 

Haskell, Capt. E , 319. 

Hatch, Col. Jabez, notice of, 360ra. Let- 
ter from, to William Heath, 360. 
Mentioned, 195, 295. 

Hay, Col. Udny, letters from, to William 
Heath, 18, 24. Letter to, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 21. Mentioned, 11, 35, 
118, 130, 141, 157. Considers about 
resigning his office, 19, 21,26. 

Hayward, Capt. , 331. 

Hazen, Col. Moses, 117, 125, 139, 140, 141, 
162, 163, 174, 320, 321, 328, 332. 

Heath, Maj.-Gen. William, letters from, 
to John Adams, 395 ; James Bow- 
doin, 92, 93, 108 ; George Clinton, 11, 
15, 123, 182, 303, 319 ; Thomas dish- 
ing, 118; Caleb Davis, 169, 181; 
Thomas Edwards, 367 ; John Hancock, 
154, 164, 166, 175, 208, 222, 227, 261, 
262, 275, 290, 369, 383, 388, 390 ; Udny 
Hay, 21 ; Robert Howe, 34, 56, 57, 58 ; 
William Hull, 149; Michael Jackson, 
39 ; Marquis de Lafayette, 73, 84, 99 ; 
Benjamin Lincoln, 379; William Liv- 
ingston, 272; Alexander McDougall, 
133, 226, 231, 267, 305, 318, 328, 338; 
Thomas McKean, 283, 284; Council 
of Massachusetts, 36 ; General Assem- 
bly of Massachusetts, 51 ; Hugh Max- 
well, 175, 362; Convention of Com- 
mittees 11 of the New England States, 
216; Samuel H Parsons, 150, 260; 
John Paterson, 20, 340; Jonathan Pol- 
lard and Samuel Barrett, 299 ; Elipha- 
let Porter, 392 ; Jeremiah Powell, 32 ; 
Rufus Putnam, 238; Comte de Ro- 
chambeau, 110, 168 ; Recruiting Com- 
mittee of the Town of Roxbury, 76 ; 
Silvanus Seely, 269 ; William Shepard, 
7; Lord Stirling, 347, 356; Benjamin 
Tallmadge, 253, 277 ; Jonathan Trum- 
bull, 196, 203, 213, 228,286; Richard 
Varick, 352; George Washington, 8, 



414 



INDEX. 



10, 13, 17, 22, 30, 36, 41, 59, 62, 64, 70, 
71, 74, 75, 79, 80, 81, 82, 84, 87, 88, 91, 
96, 101, 102, 104, 105, 107,109, 113, 116, 
125, 134, 137, 139, 141, 142, 143, 144, 
145, 152, 153, 155, 156, 158, 159, 161, 
162, 171, 173, 177, 178, 183, 184, 186, 
187, 189, 190, 191, 192, 198, 201, 204, 
210, 220, 223, 224, 233, 236, 239, 246, 
275, 277, 280, 294, 323, 325, 327, 331, 
332, 334, 335, 337, 340, 341, 343, 345, 
348, 350, 353, 359, 364, 365, 367, 368, 
371, 373, 375, 377, 381, 384, 386, 396; 
Meshech Weare, 199, 207, 256. Letters 
to, from John Adams, 398; Josiah Bart- 
lett, 273; Jabez Bowen, 85; George 
Clinton, 122, 321; David Cobb, 294; 
John Glover, 314 ; John Greaton, 378 ; 
William Greene, 95,100; John Hancock, 
348*, 389 ; Jabez Hatch, 360 ; Udny Hay, 
18, 24; Robert Howe, 46, 50, 54, 364; 
William Hull, 146, 179 ; David Hum- 
phrys, 165 ; Henry Knox, 40 ; Marquis 
de Lafayette, 66, 89, 97, 98, 128 ; Wil- 
liam Livingston, 255, 279; Alexander 
McDougall, 120, 129, 229, 266, 301, 306, 
315, 326 ; Thomas McKean, 233, 282 ; 
llobert Morris, 244 ; John Moylan, 297 ; 
Samuel H. Parsons, 173, 258; John 
Paterson, 4, 20, 44, 61, 114; Richard 
Peters, 240 ; Timothy Pickering, 193 ; 
Comte de Rochambeau, 113, 136; 
Philip Schuyler, 351; William Shep- 
ard, 5 ; John Stark, 242 ; Lord Stirling, 
291, 304, 358; Benjamin Tallmadge, 
111, 249, 271, 287, 309, 311 ; Jonathan 
Trumbull, 214, 237, 254 ; Richard Var- 
ick, 355 ; George Washington, 78, 94, 
392; Meshech Weare, 258. Desires 
leave of absence to visit his family, 14, 
34. Detained by the uneasiness among 
the Massachusetts soldiers, 63. Goes 
to Providence to welcome the French 
officers, 70. Is desirous to rejoin the 
army, 92. Remarks by, on the need 
of military subordination, 162-164. 
Asks for a reimbursement of extra ex- 
penses, 185. Assumes command of 
the army on the Hudson, 227, 234. Ex- 
hibits charges against Gen. McDougall, 
338. Exhibits an additional charge, 
347. Advice as to an attack on New 
York, 371. On the introduction of in- 
strumental music in the church at Rox- 
bury, 392. 

Heath, Mrs. William, 41, 180. 

Hermione, French frigate, 65, 75, 80, 85. 

Holdridge, Lieut. John, 379. 

Honeywell, Justice Israel, 178. 

Honnywell, Capt. , 337. 

Hood, Admiral Sir Samuel, 232, 233, 236. 

Hopkins, Capt. John B., 81. 

Horseneck, Conn., 5. 

Howe, Gen. Robert, notice of, 34n. Let- 
ters to, from William Heath, 34, 56, 57, 
58. Letters from, to William Heath, 
46, 50, 54, 364. Appointed, in place of 



Lord Stirling, president of the court 
martial for the trial of Gen. McDo-i- 
gall, 4U0. Mentioned, 14, 42, 158, 278, 
401, 402, 408. 

Hughes, Col. Hugh, 124, 145, 192, 231, 
267, 297, 303, 305, 308, 311, 316, 349, 
407. 

Hull, Gen. William, notice of, 146??. let- 
ters from, to William Heath, 146, 179. 
Letter to, from William Heath, 149. 
Mentioned, 146, 153, 155, 156, 158, 173, 
378. 

Humphrys, Col David, notice of, 165rc. 
Letter from, to William Heath, 165. 
Mentioned, 150. 

Hunt, Capt. Thomas, 5, 232. 

Huntington, Lieut.-Col. Ebenezer, 356. 
Appointed, in place of Col. Butler, a 
member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. Indis- 
posed, 401. 

Huntington, Gen. Jedidiah, 140, 247, 250, 
375. 



Ireland, uneasiness of, 41, 55, 57, 58. 
Iris, formerly Hancock, frigate, 65. 

J. 

J., H., mentioned, 312. 

Jack, privateer, 60. 

Jackson, Col. Henry, 118, 154, 295. Ap- 
pointed a member of the court martial 
for the trial of Gen. McDougall, 399, 
400. 

Jackson, Col. Michael, notice of, 39n. 
Letter to, from William Heath, 39. 
Appointed a member of the court mar- 
tial for the trial of Gen. McDougall, 
400. Mentioned, 4. 

Jackson, Lieut. , Sth Mass. regiment, 

334. 

Johnson, S/rJohn, 60, 122. 

Johnson, Col. Thomas, 323, 324. 

Johnstone, Commodore George, 276. 

Johnstown, N. Y., 322. 

K. 

Keese, John, 191. 

Keith, Major Israel, 39. 

King's Ferry, N. Y, 35, 155, 158, 308. 

Knap, Major Moses, 4. 

Knox, Gen. Henry, notice of, 40». Letter 
from, to William Heath, 40. Men- 
tioned, 155, 169, 242, 381. 

Knyphausen, Dodo Henry, Baron, 49, 70, 
117, 183. 

Kosciuszko, Col. Thaddeus, 126, 127. 



Lafayette, Gilbert Motier, Marquis de, 
letters from, to William Heath, 66, 89, 



INDEX. 



41S 



97, 98, 128. Letters to, from William 
Heath, 73, 84, 99. Arrives at Boston, 
61. Describes the organization of* the 
French army, 67. Equivalent ranks in 
the two armies, 69. Impatient to join 
the main army, 97, 99. Mentioned, 
264, 358, 361. 

Lafayette, frigate, 205. 

Lamont, Lieut. , 381. 

Landgraf regiment, 51. 

La Touche-Tre'ville, Capt. Louis R. M. 
La Vassor de, 65, 74, 75, 80. 

Laurens, Col. John, 235, 262. 

Lauzun, Armand Louis de Gontaut-Biron, 
Due de, 67, 84, 128. 

Laval, Anne Alexandre, M. S.J., Marquis 
de, 128. 

Lawrence, Major , 259, 261. 

Ledyard, Col. William, 107, 247. 

Lincoln, Gen. Benjamin, letter to, from 
William Heath, 379. Mentioned, 75, 
180, 343, 356, 357, 369, 375, 390. 

Livermore, Capt. Daniel, 240, 278. 

Livingston, Col. James, 145. 

Livingston, William, letters from, to 
William Heath, 255, 279. Letter to, 
from William Heath, 272. Mentioned, 
270. 

Lloyd's Neck, post at, 228, 251, 253, 265, 
289. 

Lockwood, 358. 

Longborn, Major -, 50. 

Loring, Joshua, Jr., 379. 

Loveless, , execution of, 281. 

Lowell, Rev. Charles, D.D., 393n. 

Lowther, Sir James, 359. 

Ludwick, , 135. 

Lunt, Major Ezra, 342. 

Lurvey, Serj. James, 171. 

Lyman, Major Daniel, 168. 

M. 

McDougall, Gen. Alexander, letters from, 
to William Heath, 120, 129, 229, 266, 
301, 306, 315, 326; to George Washing- 
ton, 363. Letters to, from William 
Heath, 133, 226, 231, 267, 305,318,328, 
338. Charges filed against him by Gen. 
Heath, 338. Arrested, 340. Additional 
charge preferred against him, 347. 
Announces his intention to prefer 
charges against Gen. Heath, 363. Pro- 
ceedings of the court martial, 399-408. 
Reprimanded by Gen. Washington, 408. 
Mentioned, 135, 142. 352, 355, 357, 364, 
365, 366, 367, 381. 

McDougall, Major , 121. 

McGowen, Mrs. , council held at her 

house, 405, 407. 

Machin, Capt. Thomas, 145. 

McKean, Hon. Thomas, notice of, 233?z, 
Letters from, to William Heath, 233. 

282. Letters to, from William Heath, 

283, 284. 

Maclean, Gen. Francis, 64. 



Maples, Robert, alias John Walker, 191 

Mars, ship, 170, 181. 

Marshal, Capt. , 293. 

Marshall, Col. Thomas, 4, 21. 

Martha's Vineyard, requisition on the 
inhabitants of, by the British, 104. 

Massachusetts, army officers from, com- 
plain of the scanty allowance of pro- 
visions at West Point, 3. Soldiers from, 
plan to desert, 9. Destitute condition 
of discharged soldiers in, 36. Recruits 
to be sent on to the army, 37. The 
State makes good the depreciation in 
the currency, 41. Recruits to be sent 
forward every Monday, 42. Gen. Rob- 
ert Howe wishes he had been born in, 
56. Bounty offered by the State, 60. 
Officers and soldiers, while in the army, 
to be exempt from taxation, 76. Mili- 
tia from, join the Rhode Island militia, 
101. Location of the troops from, in 
Dec, 1780, 138. Unwillingness of the 
troops to march against the Pennsyl- 
vania mutineers, 159, 160, 161. Bounty 
voted by the State, 166, 167. Ill success 
in recruiting, 179. Poor quality of the 
recruits, 181. Money sent by, to pay 
her troops, 191. Will do all in her 
power to furnish supplies for the army, 
201. Clothing not complete, 202. The 
business of permanent supplies under 
consideration, 205. Expedition urged, 
206. Importance of having provisions 
and rum from, sent forward at once, 
209. Spirited resolutions passed by, 
for completing her battalions, 211. 
Supply of fresh beef from, ib. Gen. 
Heath urges that rum from, be sent on 
at once, 222. To furnish a part of the 
beef previously required from New 
Hampshire, 224. Alacrity with which 
the militia from, have joined the army, 
262. 

Massachusetts, Council of the State of, 
letter to, from William Heath, 36. 

Massachusetts, General Assembly of, 
letter to, from William Heath, 51. 
Petition to, 206. 

Maxwell, Major Hugh, notice of, 175??. 
Letter to, from William Heath, 175, 
362. Mentioned, 177, 178. 

Maynard, Lieut. John, 31, 33. 

Mead, Col. John, 23. 

Mills, Capt. , 389. 

Money for the army, need of, 186, 193. 

Montgomery, Major , 264. 

Morgan, Gen. Daniel, 175, 176. 

Morris, Hon. Robert, letter from, to 
William Heath, 244. Mentioned, 240, 
241, 276, 325, 346. 

Morrisania, N.Y., 23, 153, 168, 169, 173. 

Morrison, Major John, 300. 

Mott's tavern, 341. 

Moylan, John, letter from, to William 
Heath, 297. Mentioned, 333. 

Murderer's Creek, N. Y., 143. 



416 



INDEX. 



Murnan, Major 
Murray, Major 



-, 240. 

-, 288. 



N. 



Negro regiment in the army, 73, 79. 

Negro slave, captured at Morrisania, to 
be sold for the benefit of the troops, 
173. 

New England States, letter to the Con- 
vention of Committees of, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 216. Application to, for 
regular supplies of provisions, etc., 196 
et seq. 

Newhall, Lieut-Col. Ezra, 159, 160, 161. 

New Hampshire, location of the troops 
from, in Dec, 1780, 138. Regular sup- 
plies from, needed for the army, 199, 
200. Little clothing prepared, 202. 
Importance of having permanent sup- 
plies from, 208. Statement of what 
had been done, 223. Quantity of heef 
from, to be reduced, 224. Difficulties 
with Vermont, 274. 

New Haven, Conn., 237, 247, 259. 

New Jersey troops, revolt of, 165, 167, 
168, 169. 

New London, Conn., 238, 247, 250, 254, 
259, 263, 264. 

Newport, R. I., French fleet and army at, 
82, 83, 84, 87. Proposed attack on, 
93. Mentioned, 259. 

New Windsor, N. Y., 4, 35. 

New York, illicit trade with, 5. Distress 
of the British in, 12. Situation of the 
troops in, 252. Movements of the 
British in, 263, 265, 271. Proposed 
attack on, 282, 284, 285. 

Nicholas, Major , 241. 

Nicola, Col. Lewis, appointed a member 
of the court martial for the trial of 
Gen. McDougall, 401. Succeeded by 
Lieut.-Col. Sprout, 402. 

Nixon, Col. Thomas, 133. 

Koailles, Louis Marie, Vicomte de, 128, 
145. 

Norton, Col. Chappie, 32, 33. 

Norwalk, Conn., 272. 



O. 

Ogden, , 164. 

Olney, Col. Jeremiah, 375. 

Otis and Henley, Messrs., 212, 221. 



Paper, scarcity of, in the army, 164. 
Parker, Daniel, arm// contractor, 386. 
Parsons, Gen. Samuel H., letters to, from 

William Heath, 150, 260. Letters 

from, to William Heath,. 173, 258. 

Mentioned, 152, 158, 159, 166, 186, 

228, 238, 254. 



Paterson, Gen. John, letters from, to 
William Heath, 4, 20, 44, 61, 114. 
Letters to, from William Heath, 20, 
340. Appointed to the command of 
West Point on the arrest of Gen. 
McDougall, 340. Appointed a mem- 
ber of the court martial for the trial 
of Gen. McDougall, 399, 400. Men- 
tioned, 29, 119, 135, 229, 267, 317, 332, 
344, 350, 381. 

Peabody, Lieut. Ebenezer, desires to re- 
sign his commission, 23. 

Pennsylvania Line, mutiny in the, 150, 
151,* 152, 159, 164, 168. 

Perkins, Major William, 72. 

Peters, Richard, letter from, to William 
Heath, 240. 

Phelps, Oliver, 198, 201, 211, 219, 249. 

Phillips, Gen. William, 190, 299. 

Phillips, , 12, 13, 178. 

Pickering, Col. Timothy, letter from, to 
William Heath, 193, 330. Mentioned, 
344. 

Pierce, Bev. John, D.D., his notice of 
Rev. Eliphalet Porter, D.D., 392rc. 

Pigot, Gen. Robert, 300. 

Pollard, Col. Jonathan, 299, 300,301. 

Pollard, Col. Jonathan, and Barrett, Sam- 
uel, letter to, from William Heath, 2y9. 

Pomeroy, Ralph, 195, 221, 248. 

Pompton, N. ./., 137, 155, 157, 236. 

Poor, Gen. Enoch, 9, 10, 23, 32, 51. 

Popkin, Lieut.-Col. John, 384. 

Porter, Ren. Eliphalet, D.D., notice of, 
392». Letter to, from William Heath, 
on the introduction of instrumental 
music in the church in Roxbury, 392. 

Porter, Rev. John, 393n. 

Porter, Major John, 343. 

Porter, Major , 171. 

Powell, Hon. Jeremiah, letter to, from 
William Heath, 32. 

Pray, Capt. John, 189, 190, 236, 237. 

Prichard, Capt. Thomas, 147, 148, 149, 
150, 176. 

Prince, John, 361. 

Paine and Russell, Messrs., 295. 

Prince William, Britith ship of the line, 
283. 

Proclamation as to the supply of provis- 
ions at Newport, R. I., during the pres- 
ence of the Erench army and fleet, 83. 

Providence, R. I., 66, 70, 88. Powder at, 
stored in a dangerous place, 72, 87. 
Convention at, 212. 

Prudent, British ship, 252, 264. 

Public spirit, decline of, in 1780, 44-46. 

Putnam, Rev. George, D.D., 393n 

Putnam, Gen. Ruf us, letter to, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 238. Appointed a member 
of the court martial for the trial of 
Gen. McDougall, 399. Mentioned, 14, 
159, 160, 161, 171, 237, 326, 327, 328, 
329, 330, 332, 364, 377. 

Pyramus (Paramus), N. J., attack on, 
46, 49. 






INDEX. 



417 



Q. 

Quakers, 303. 

Queen of Y ranee, frigate, 75. 



R. 

Ray, Ensign Beajamin, 5. 

Head, Thomas, paymaster, 27, 35. 

Recruiting for the army, 37, 38, 42, 43, 
44, 48, 49, 54, 115, 116, 119, 181. 

Reid, Lieut.- Col. George, 332, 343, 346. 

Reid, Major , 125, 140, 141, 144. 

Rensselaer, Gen. Henry K. (Van), 292, 

Rhode Island, to complete her quota for 
the army, 74. Not to be incorporated 
with black recruits, 75. Arrival of 
the French fleet and army at, 84. 
Drought in, 86. Difficulty in supply- 
ing the troops witli provisions, 95. The 
whole militia to be called out to repel an 
expected attack from the British, 100. 
Fails to raise her regiment of three 
months' militia, 104. Location of the 
troops from, in 1780, 138. Will spare 
no exertions to furnish the necessary 
supplies for the army, 201. Clothing 
nearly complete, 202. Gov. Greene's 
account of what had been done, 220, 
221. Supplies ordered by, 224. 

Richardson (Richards), Capt. Peter, 247. 

Rickman, , 303. 

Riedesel, Frederick Adolph, Baron von, 
281, 324. 

Ring wood, N. J., 155. 

Rivington, James, his " New York Loyal 
Gazette," 236, 248, 275. 

Roherts, Capt. , 30, 31, 33. 

Robertson, James, his '"Royal American," 
232. 

Robust, British ship, 252, 264. 

Robinson, Col. Beverley, 141. 

Robinson, Ensign Thomas, 369. 

Rochambeau, , J. B. Donatien Vimeur, 
Comte de,letters to, from William Heath, 
110, 168. Letters from, to William 
Heath, 113, 136. Mentioned, 67, 69, 
74, 84, 86, 87, 89, 90, 91, 92, 94, 95, 96, 
97, 98, 100, 101, 102, 103, 105, 106, 107, 
108, 109, 110, 295. 

Rodney, Admiral George B., 107, 108, 109. 

Roebuck, British ship, 252. 

Ross, Major Alexander, 304. 

Roxbury, Mass., letter to the Recruiting 
Committee of the town of, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 76. Introduction of in- 
strumental music in the church in, 392. 

Rum for the armv, pressing need of, 197, 
200, 204, 207, 211, 213, 215, 221, 222, 
224, 227. 

Russia, Empress of, 391. 



S., Mr., arrested and tried, 312, 313. 
St. Johns, Canada, 276. 



St. Leger, Col. Barry, 304. 

Saltonatail, Capt. , 217. 

Sands, Comfort, contractm-, 336, 346, 368. 

Saratoga, 276, 281, 296, 321. 

Scammel, Col. Alexander, 287, 334. 

Scarcity of provisions in the army, 16, 
19, 33, 34, 144, 157. 

Schoharie, N. Y., 322. 

Schuyler, Gen. Philip, letter from, to 
William Heath, 351. Mentioned, 100, 
286, 342, 345, 350, 354. 

Secret Intelligence from New York, 252, 
263, 265, 287, 313. Mentioned, 47. 

Seely, Col. Silvanus, letter to, from Wil- 
liam Heath, 269. Mentioned, 255, 272, 
273, 280. 

Sewall, Capt. Henry, 22. 

Shaw, Major Samuel, 41. 

Sheldon, Col. Elisha, 152, 226, 227, 237, 
277, 290, 311, 325. 328, 331, 337. 

Shepard, Col. William, notice of, 5n. 
Letter from, to William Heath, 5. 
Letter to, from William Heath, 7. 
Appointed a member of the court 
martial for the trial of Gen. McDou- 
gall, 399. Mentioned, 12, 13. 

Sherman, Lieut. -Col. Isaac, appointed a 
member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 

Sill, Capt. , 347. 

Simcoe, Col. John G , 93. 

Simpson, , information given by, 189. 

Skinner, , 379. 

Small pox in the army, 178,326,334,343. 

Smart, Capt. , 171. 

Smith, Joshua, 112, 124. 

Smith, Col. William, 170. 

Smith, Lieut.-Col. , 381. Appointed 

a member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 

Smith, Capt. , 331. 

Smith Town, L. I., 250, 251, 253. 

Snow, Lieut. Lemuel, 23. 

Specie from France, to be transported 
from Boston to Philadelphia, 240 etstq., 
296. 

Spencer, Serj. William, 29. 

Sprout, Lieut.-Col PTienezer, 171. Ap- 
pointed a member of the court martial 
for the trial of Gen. McDougall, in the 
place of Col. Nicola, 402. 

Spurr, Major John, appointed a member 
of the court martial for the trial of 
Gen. McDougall, 400. 

Stacey, Lieut.-Col. William, 60, 324. 

Stamford, Conn., 236, 238, 239, 250, 260. 

Stark, Gen. John, letter from, to William 
Heath, 242. Mentioned, 235, 281, 284, 
286, 291, 292, 293, 296, 320, 3l5, 328, 
332 342 343 

Staten Island, 11,' 47, 252, 272, 275, 279, 
283, 300. 

Stevens, Nathaniel, 196, 199. 

Stewart, , 330. 

Stirling, William Alexander. Gen. Lord, 
letters from, to William Heath, 291, 304, 



27 



418 



INDEX. 



358. Letters to, from "William Heath, 
347, 35(1 Appointed president of the 
court martial for the trial of Gen. 
McDougall, 399. Challenged and asks 
to be excused, 400. Mentioned, 1 1, 296. 

Stoddard, Capt. , 30, 31. 

Strong, Major , 132. 

Sullivan, Gen. John, 86. 

Sumner, Capt. Job, 145. 

Supplies for the army, difficulty in fur- 
nishing, 95. 

Swansea, R. I., 86. 

Swift, Col. Heman, 374, 375, 376. Ap- 
pointed a member of the court marrial 
for the trial of Gen. McDougall, 399, 
400. 



T. 

Tallmadge, Col. Benjamin, notice of, lllw. 
Letters from, to William Heath, 111, 
249,271,287,309,311. Letters to, from 
William Heath, 253, 277. Mentioned, 
109, 136, 156, 238, 247, 259, 278. 

Tappen, Dr. Christopher, 24. 

Tarleton, Col. Banastre, 175, 176. 

Ten Broeck, Gen. Abraham, 122. 

Ternay, Admiral Charles L. d'Arsac de, 
67, 69, 74, 87, 88, 99, 107. 

Thomas, Col. Thomas, 153, 156. 

Thompson, Lieut.-Col. Joseph, capture of, 
30, 31, 33, 49. 

Throop, Major Benjamin, appointed a 
memher of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 

Thurber, Benjamin, 96. 

Tisdale, Capt. James, 331, 379. 

Torbay, British ship of the line, 283. 

Tories, British army supplied by, 5. 

Totten, Capt. Gilbert, 337, 338. 

Towusend, Dr. David, 374. 

Trescott, Col. Lemuel, 238, 278, 309, 
311. , 

Troops on the Hudson River, arrange- 
ment of, in December, 1780, 137-139 ; 
in December, 1781, 320-322. 

Trumbull, Jonathan, Gor. of Connecticut, 
letters to, from William Heath, 196, 
203, 213, 228, 286. Letters from, to 
William Heath, 214, 237, 254. Men- 
tioned, 91, 93, 96, 198, 201, 223, 247, 
260, 325. 

Trumbull, frigate, 66. 

Tryon, Gen. William, character of, 49. 

Tupner, Col. Benjamin, 121, 267, 269, 291, 
292, 293, 312, 354. 



V. 

Vanalstin, Major , 278. 

Van Alstine, Capt. , 402. 

Van Schaick, Col. Gozen,113, 114, 186. 

Vanvoost, Lieut. , 13. 

Vanzandt, , 301. 



Varick, "Richard, notice of, 



Letter 



to, from William Heath, 352. Letter 
from, to William Heath, 355. Men- 
tioned, 117, 349, 355,357, 358, 359, 366. 

Varnum, Gen. James M., 98. 

Varnum, Capt. , 53. 

Vaudreuil, Louis Philippe de Rigaud, 
Marquis de, 385. 

Vermille, Capt. , 360. 

Vermont, 274, 281. Negotiations with 
the British government, 323. 

Viomenil, Antoine Charles de Houx, 
Baron de, 107, 109. 

Vose, Lieut. -Col. Elijah, 28. Appointed 
a member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, 400. 



w. 

Wadsworth, Gen. Peleg, 65. 

Walker, John, alias Robert Naples, 191. 

Walker, Capt. , 8. 

Wallace, James, Attorney- General of Eng- 
land, 371. 

Warner, Gen. Seth, 176. 

Warren, Capt. Benjamin, 4. 

Warren, Mrs. , 127. 

Washington, Gen. George, letters to, from 
William Heath, 8, 10, 13, 17, 22, 27, 30, 
36, 41, 59, 62, 64, 70, 71, 74, 75, 79, 80, 
81, 82, 84, 87, 88, 91, 96, 101, 102, 104, 
105, 107, 109, 113, 116, 125, 134, 137, 
139, 141, 142, 143, 144, 145, 152, 153, 
155, 156, 158, 159, 161, 162, 171, 173, 
177, 178, 183, 184, 186, 187, 189, 190, 
191, 192, 198, 201, 204, 210, 220, 223, 
224, 233, 236, 239, 246, 275, 277, 280, 
294, 323, 325, 327, 331, 332, 334, 335, 
337, 340, 341, 343, 345, 348, 350, 35.'}, 
359, 364, 365, 367, 368, 371, 373, 375, 
377, 381, 384, 386, 396; from Alexan- 
der McDougall, 363. Letters from, to 
William Heath, 78, 94, 392. Men- 
tioned, 34, 38, 39, 69, 90, 93, 97, 98, 99, 
112, 120, 123, 124, 133, 149, 150, 160, 
196, 199, 203, 209, 213, 214, 215, 216, 
217, 222, 223, 227, 233, 234, 248, 255, 
256, 257, 258, 261, 283, 287, 289, 303, 
305, 312, 352, 357, 358, 362, 391. 

Waterbury, Gen. David, 348. 

Watson, Capt. , 30, 31, 33, 146. 

Wayne, Gen. Anthony, 151. 

Weare, Hon. Meshech, letters to, from 
William Heath, 199, 207, 256. Letter 
from, to William Heath, 258. Men- 
tioned, 223. 

Webb, Col. Samuel B., 138. Appointed 
a member of the court martial for the 
trial of Gen. McDougall, in place of 
Col. Greaton, 401. 

Webb, Col. , 231. 

Weeks, Major , 25. 

Weeks, , 120. 

Weissenfels, Col. Frederick, 114, 122, 123, 
124, 125, 230, 231, 232, 239, 281. 



INDEX. 



410 



Wells, Col. Levi, 91. 

Wesson, Col. James, 4. 

West Point, scanty allowance of provis- 
ions at, 3, 4, 15, 17, 65, 117. Fire at, 
8, 20, 21, 22, 27. Desertions at, 9. 
Friction at, between Gens. Heath and 
McDougall, 267 et seq., 309, 315-318, 
327, and passim. 

Whipple, Capt. Abraham, 75. 

Whiting, , 22. 

Whitwell, Dr. Samuel, 369. 

Willett, Col. Marin us, 293, 296, 297, 321. 

William Henrv, Prince (William IV. of 
England), 276. 

Williams, Capt. Abraham, 317, 319, 
377. 

Williams, John, 80, 81. 



Williams, Capt. Joseph, S98n. 
Williams, Dr. Thomas, 393/t. 
Williams, Lieut. Robert, 13. 
Williamsburg, 17/., 168. 
Winter of 1779-1780, severity of, 4, 5, 6, 

7, 11. 

Wood, Col. , 29. 

Worthington, Col. John, 389. 

Wurmb, Lieut. -Col. Ludwig J. A. von, 

14, 247. 
Wyckoff, Major Hendrick, 330. 



Yorktown, Va., siege of, 290. Surrender 
of, 294, 295.